Sunday Blessing

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Look behind to find gratitude,
look forward to find vision,
look up to find strength,
look within to discover peace.

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Throwback Thursday: Christmas Baby

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In honor of the upcoming holidays, grab your babies and give them an extra squeeze. They won’t be this small for long!

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Sunday Blessing

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May every sunrise hold more promise,
and every sunset hold more peace.

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All I want for Christmas is… peace.

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My son and I had an interesting conversation the other day while in the car. It started out the way our conversations often do… “Mom.”… “Mom… Mommy!…” “Mommy!Mommy!Mommy!” (I wish I were exaggerating). 

“Yes, my love?”

“Did you know that tomorrow is silly hat day?” … (I’m not given the opportunity to respond before he’s onto the next subject.) … “Do you think Precious is still in our old backyard?” (Precious was a deer that had her fawns in our back yard in the spring of 2015. I have no idea how he still remembers this.)  “Eevee is cold.” (Eevee is a Pokémon stuffy, who lacks the ability to feel temperature, but he stops for a breath and I answer while I have the chance.)

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The Power… of Forgiveness

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I believe that the old adage, “Time heals all wounds” is wrong. I honestly believe that forgiveness is the only thing that can heal emotional wounds. Sometimes, it is in your own best interests to forgive people who have wronged you, even if they don’t ask for, need, or want that forgiveness. Not for them, but for yourself.

Carrying a grudge for someone who has wronged you will rarely hurt them, but it will continue to hurt you until you let it go. The weight of that grudge will weigh you down, and keep you from being able to enjoy your life or have healthy relationships.

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Sunday Blessing

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May you have a rainbow for every storm,
a smile for every tear,
a promise for every care,
and a blessing for every trial.

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A Few of My Favorite Things: Spice Mix Edition

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I love spices. I have two full racks above my stove, and could easily use another for my “most commonly used spices”.  I really enjoy mixing and grinding my own.  I have an old Baby-Bullet (which doesn’t get much use now that my “baby” is in elementary school) that is now dedicated to spice grinding.

 

Ras El Hanout

Bar-none my favorite spice mix.  I have about 6 different recipes or recipe variations where this is the primary spice profile. I have my favorite recipe for this in my recipe area. I love it with beef, chicken or lamb, and it’s amazing with lentils. It has a lot of flavor without being hot/spicy.

Berbere Spice

Another of my favorites. Berbere is a spice mix used in Ethiopian cuisine.  It’s crazy flavorful and spicy, especially when you mistake hot paprika for smoked paprika!

Jerk Seasoning

Jerk seasoning is a traditional Jamaican spice, which includes (among many other things) Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and garlic. It’s amazing on chicken and pork, served with pineapple.

Harissa

Harissa comes as either a spice mix or spice paste.  It’s primarily found in Tunisian cuisine. The spice mix is made from a variety of chiles, caraway seeds,  coriander, cumin, salt and garlic, and ground tomatoes. Peppers and onions are added to make the paste.  This is amazing on roasted vegetables like carrots, zucchini or squash.

Baharat

This is a spice mix s a spice mixture or blend used in Middle Eastern cuisine. While there are a bunch of variations, my favorite combines allspice, black pepper, cardamom, cassia, cloves, coriander, cumin, nutmeg, turmeric, saffron, ginger and hot paprika. I love it as a marinade/spice rub for red meat.

Herbes de Province

This is a french herb mix. It’s made from savory, marjoram, rosemary, thyme, and oregano, and tastes really good in soups and stews.

Chinese Five Spice

While there are a bunch of variations, Chinese Five Spice is made primarily of Star anise, cloves,  cinnamon, peppers, and fennel. I love it with pork, sliced apples and cabbage.

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Throwback Thursday: Animal Edition

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I grew up on a 600 acre hog, sheep, and horse farm in Northwest Ohio, so I rarely find myself at a loss for random photos of me with critters.

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Profiles in Positivity: Linda Ann Schofield

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My mom, Linda Ann Schofield has a bachelor’s degree (English) and two masters degrees (English & Educational Media).  She spent most of her career as a teacher and High School Librarian.  She was the 2012 Ohio Poet of the Year.  She won this award with her poetry collection, “Psalms of the Hood”, which details (in poetic form) my sister’s first teaching job at an inner-city school. This collection never fails to make me sob like a colicky baby. 

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Be Grateful, Even for Negative People

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There is a person in my life, who I will call Tiffany. Tiffany is a friend of the family, and not someone I could easily eject from my life as my son spends time with her kids, and there are regular family events that we both get invited to. She has an aggressive, controlling personality, a bad temper, a potty mouth, and a habit of lashing out and stabbing for someone’s weakest points on a semi-regular basis. Tiffany is a deeply unhappy person and not a founding member of my fanclub. She denigrates me to family and friends at regular intervals in the crassest terms possible.

This is difficult for me…

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