Tuesday, February 2, 2010

I'm Random in 2010

Just a few thoughts--

A. Finishing up (ok...procrastinating) 2009 Prairie Farm taxes. I don't know why I put it off. It does go fairly quickly if I stay current. Stay current.... oh yeah.... that's why I don't like doing it. I'm can never stay current. It's a goal.

Maybe my pretty new file folders and desk assessories will help. They can't hurt.

B. My menu planning is in a boggle. It's not that I don't have the ingredients. We've refilled the pantry, fridge and freezer from the past months usage and I have an abundance again.
It's not a lack of inspiration or suggestions. Goodness knows I have plenty of recipes, cookbooks, blogs I read and subscriptions to Cook's Illustrated and allrecipes dot com. Folks I admire like Karen, Penney/Terri, Tammy and PW wet my appetite, cause me to lust over their talent by posting their menus.
Maybe that's the problem.... I'm on food overload! I need to take it one day at a time.
Here's what I have so far:
Monday- We ate "out" while running errands in the City.

Tuesday- (today) I'm stuck. Not sure what the Farmer-dude will want when he gets home from his very long over-time shift today. In consideration is Souper Steak (smothered cube steaks) or broiled sausages or PW's Cajun Chicken or Lasagna or take-home Pizza, but then a juicy cheeseburger sounds good too. (See?! I can't decide.)

Wednesday- Slow-cooker Pulled Pork on whole-grain buns, cole slaw, oven fries, chocolate mousse.

Thursday- B4S night : French Toast, ham, mixed fruit cup.

Friday- Salmon, roasted asparagus (me), cooked carrots (Farmer), any left over cole slaw, biscuits, banana cream pie.

C. I signed up for the Secret Sister ministry at our church. I haven't been a Secret Sis in a long time. I'm looking for new ideas on RAKs. Feel free to leave them in the comments.

D. My clothing amount is out of control again! I thought I purged plenty last summer but I've been noticing what I'm not wearing this winter. Time to purge the unwanted again. Someone else surely has more need of it than my closet and dresser!

E. I stumbled across the mention of a newer show on History Channel called "something" Pickers. (google it)
About 2 guys who drive the back roads in search of old farms, horded collections and then rummage through those places looking for "junk" to buy to resell.
At first I was intrigued at the concept, thinking it was was a bit like my thrifting or flea marketing. But as I watched the 3 episodes I recorded I started to get a bit uncomfortable with the idea. The guys are very nice and polite to their clients. They paid a fair price (I guess) for what was just sitting in sheds, barns, covered in dirt, hidden in the weeds.
I think what got under my skin was seeing the profit they make on these items. I know they need to make a profit to successfully run their business, but it still seems a little shady to me. They pay, say $75 for an old sign and flip it for $150.
Maybe if most of their accusations didn't come from elderly people, (some who didn't seem too sharp), I wouldn't mind so much. These folks were happy to get the money, but I wonder if they would have been as happy if they knew how much "Mike and Frank" made when they resold it? Maybe I'm looking at this all wrong and is it right to let these items just rot & rust away into nothing when someone is willing to purchase them and use them. After all no-one is getting any pleasure from this stuff when it's hidden away under layers of other stuff or buried in the weeds. Now the client has some cash in hand and the final buyers have some Americana. Mike and Frank are just the middle men.
Maybe it's the stories I've heard of one of my great-grandmas being swindled by an "antique dealer" out of all her nice things for very little money.

Your thoughts?

and finally F. Let me first say, if any of my church family reads this, please don't take offense. (That'll get everyone's attention. lol)
I've been feeling .... how do I explain it?...... that we're not being used to our full potential at my church. It's a past year of internal strife, hurts and angst. We're healing, we're growing and yet we continue the same.
I thought the Secret Sisters would be a vibrant, exciting ministry to participate in. And it will be for me, because it's right up my alley. But I was surprised to see how few ladies were a part of it at church. I know, it's not for everyone, but it still feels like another division taking place.
I've felt for a while now that we are a bunch of groups who all come together on the edges on Sunday mornings, but the "Christian Family" feeling we should have, is not something I really feel.
Don't get me wrong, we have some wonderful friends there we interact with and feel close to. But I don't feel a sameness of direction, of vision, a common goal from the Body in general. Alot of Sundays, I feel like Farmer and I are worshiping alone and alot of the rest are just "there." (boy doesn't that make me sound "greater than thou!" It's not meant to.)
I feel like all we do is concentrate on "us." We don't seem to reach out to our neighborhood beyond the Easter Pageant. We did do VBS in a local park for several years but that seemed stiff and forced. There was no relationship with the area.
Now, it's wrong to complain without offering a solution, isn't it? I'd love to see us have a monthly event, open to the surrounding area. Something "non-threatening." Some way to love on and minister to those who live & work around us. Use the yard and parking lot in the warm months. Send out postcards/mailings to the residential area around us. Hang posters in the near-by shopping centers. Have a place-card at the motel down the street.
Maybe all these things have been tried and failed... I don't know and that's my fault for not asking. I've asked about a few things that were not possibilities. Maybe it's just my small-town/rural mind-set trying to relate to a Body that resides in the City.
I guess I'm tired of looking at Us, at myself and wanted to be used. I want to be stretched and see God work through us, beyond our walls.

Please, if you do, would you pray with me on this.

And these are the thoughts flying around in my head today. Sometimes it's a varied and cluttered space.


** "The mind I love must have wild places,
a tangled orchard where dark damsons drop in the heavy grass,
an overgrown little wood, the chance of a snake or two,
a pool that nobody's fathomed the depth of,
and paths threaded with flowers planted by the mind."
~Katherine Mansfield


  1. First--the menu. Choose something easy. Spend time doing what you want to do. I think we eat about half of what I plan, so that is the way I cook. Tonight is baked pork chops, with baked potatoes and carrots. Need some fruit--we'll slice an orange and a banana!

    Second--SS gifts--bookmarks, socks for FUN, gloves, handmade gifties from YOU--(something simple like potholders?) something to bring a smile to their face.

    Taxes--forget it, I'm not the tax person around here!

  2. Menus are something I hardly ever plan. I look in the fridge, see what's in there to use, take meat out of the freezer to go with it and decide if I need anything from the cold room to accompany it.
    I sometimes wonder when the church is going to get shaken awake and quit playing church and start BEING the church.
    Thanks for the reminder....I need to "do books" soon if I'm going to like myself ;)

  3. OK - here's my .02 cents - take it or leave it. As you know, you and I worship a bit differently - but I've often felt as if I'm not doing enough - or I'm not OUT THERE enough. Then I realized - that is exactly what God intends for me. To have me behave perfectly normal (well, normal for me) and THEN to have people find out exactly who I am. You also, are an excellent example of what a true follower of Christ should be like. You are kind and gentle, and often put others before yourself. You are always availabe with a kind word and a hug (I'll skip that second part, thank you very much ;) ) Think about it - perhaps what you do - day in and day out - and the friends that you touch - day in and day out - are indeed God's way of working through you. If he requires more from you - he will supply not only the inclination as to what to do - but also the inspiration to get it done. Until then - just be yourself - because that is the best testimony of God's love I can think of !

    As for SS gifts - I received a box early last month - totally unexpected - because it was from a cyber sister - who just did it RAK. Inside was a stainless steel water bottle (gets used by me every single day now), cute post its, shopping lists and pens, a handmade washcloth (made from yarn she had recycled from a sweater from a thrift shop)little giftees for the girlies, and a homemade card. I can't tell you how wonderful those little things made me feel. It's the unexpected thoughtfullness - not the amount of money you can spend - that makes a SS giftee box that much more fun !

    The Menu - Each month I take out 2-3 cookbooks from the library. From those I plan out 4 or 5 new recipes - and mix them in with 4 or 5 tried and true recipes, along with quick meals like spaghetti, or fish and rice, or sandwiches. By spacing out those 10 meals over a month - along with quick favorites - I can just about plan an entire months menu's in a few hours. I also love, love, love my subscription to Cooking Light - if you don't have a magazine swap - why not start one in your church ? Wonderful way to share subscriptions and try new recipes !


  4. Great ideas all of you!

    Deb-- when I catch you, you are getting such a big hug! (you won't have to worry, You Fit Woman, You!--I'm slower than molasses in January **country hick twang**)

  5. Hi Kay thanks for the compliment, and the link. :)

    one small note on paring down clothes. Try this if you will: turn all the hangers in your closet backwards, so the curve faces in. As you wear an item of clothing, rotate the hanger. At the end of the season, or the year, whichever you prefer, pull out all te clothes you didn't wear. Then there's no question what to keep! :)

  6. Great idea Karen, I'll do it. Hug a certain little buddy for me today. ;O)