Sunday, April 19, 2009

Death Comes To Us All

Dear Ladies,

We have been doing more then our fair share dinner with a movie. When Eric is gone we tend to be more relaxed about dinner. Sometimes I will decide we better start acting normal and eat dinner at the table. BUT we are all enjoying our dinner/movie nights, do we really need to be normal. We have watched most of the PG movies from the Redbox that we wanted to see; that may cause us to have to stop our movie watching or find a different rental source.

My father is 88 years old and isn't doing very well. We are hoping he will hang in there until after May 6th when Eric is due home. I really don't want to deal with the funeral without him to tempter family feelings. My Dad has been married three times and has children from his first two marriages.

My dad was born in 1921, only attender school through the 8th grade when he had to start working to help support the family. He was one of 12 children. He has outlived all but the youngest sister. He was drafted to serve in World War II, was wounded twice and was part of the occupation force in Japan. He saw airplane and automobile travel become the norm. He saw the invention of the tv, phone, computers, washing machines, radios, microwaves, and bubble gum. I was blessed to have a wonderful visit, the best one in a long time, in November. We attended church with him, his wife, my sister and her boys. Afterwards we went out to lunch, then to their new home for a visit. I'm thankful for that visit. I have chosen not to go to NY now, but have talked to him a few minutes on the phone.

Death is a part of life and sometimes is very hard for us to understand. Children handle death so much better then we do. I think sometimes they wonder why we are crying. Isn't going home to be with Jesus what we all want to do? So how do we has moms handle explaining the death of a loved one to our little ones?

1. Explain to your child that they have gone to see Jesus. For some children this is all they will need.

2. Comfort them and allow them to cry, but don't be upset if they don't show any sorrow.

3. If they are beyond the toddler years take them to the visitation or the funeral. Explain to them before hand that they will be viewing the person's body or shell, but their spirit or the part we loved is with Jesus.

4. If you aren't sure the person was saved it is a little bit more difficult. Let your child know their spirit is gone and leave it at that.

5. Talk about the things you loved or did with the person. Enjoy sharing funny stories with them and ask them to share something they remember.

6. Talk about death before it happens. Talk about how grandparents wouldn't always be with us, so we have to enjoy them while we can. Let them know it is a part of life. If you have a pet who dies, even a goldfish, use this as an opportunity to talk about death.

7. Pray and ask for guidance.

We lost two young cousins in a car accident 5 years ago. That was a difficult death for my children and there was no explanation as to why it happened. We knew that both children had made Jesus their savior, so we could rejoice in knowing that they were with Jesus. Sometimes all you can do is cry together and say we don't understand why such an accident could happen. It is ok to be honest with your children, they will have a better understanding of death when we address their questions honestly.

Have a wonderful weekend with your family and rejoice in each new day God gives us to enjoy each other.


Monday, April 13, 2009

I'm A Sinner!!

Dear Ladies,

Just a short note before I head to bed. I was listening to a sermon on line this past week. The speaker discussed the topic of asking God for forgiveness or our need to repent of our sins. I occurred to me that in my quiet times with the Lord I had gotten away from asking God to forgive me. I had forgotten how I need to confront my sins and confess them to God. I seldom hear the topic of repentance talked about, so I guess it had slipped my mind. How foolish of me!! I know Jesus died for my sins, so why is it I was forgetting to ask forgiveness. It isn't because I never sin, I sin everyday. I yell at my kids or say things I shouldn't. I get angry at my husband. I'm judgemental. The list could go on, but you get the picture. Sinless I am not.

We are all sinners and it is only by the grace of God that we are able to have relationship with Him. I'm thankful that God gently reminded me that I need to confess and as I begin naming my sin I have a better understanding of what I need to work on to become like Christ.

I encourage you, dear sisters in the Lord, to take a few minutes this week and reflect on your sins. It isn't fun, but if we don't take the time to think about our short comings we can become caught in the trap of thinking that we are doing everything right. Ask Him to open your eyes to your sins; once we know what sin is harboring in our life then we can begin to work on reflecting Jesus in all we do.

God is merciful and will forgive. He even will forgive us for when we forget to confess our sins.

In His Service,

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easy Chicken/turkey Bake


I hope you all had a wonderful Easter and were able to enjoy some time with your family. For those of you that had turkey today for Easter Dinner, here is an easy recipe to use some of your leftovers.

1 pk. cornbread stuffing mix
1 cup hot water
1 1/2 lb chicken/turkey(cooked)
1 can condensed cream of chicken soup
1/3 cup sour cream
1 bag of frozen mixed veggies-thawed and drained(broccoli or green beans will also work)

Preheat oven 400 degrees. Sprinkle 1/2 cup of dry stuffing evenly on bottom of 13x9" baking dish. Add hot water to remaining stuffing mix, stir until moistened.

Place chicken over dry stffing mix. Mix soup, sour cream and veggies, spoon over chicken. Top with prepared stuffing.

Bake 30 minutes.

The sour cream is really what gives this dish its unique taste; you can make the dish without it, but it is better with the sour cream. This dish works well to put together during the day when you have time and then it is ready to stick into the oven at dinner time.


Thursday, April 9, 2009

Fun and Easy Easter Treat

Here is a quick and fun treat you can make with your children and share with them what Jesus did for us and the really meaning of Easter.

You will need a tube of refrigerator biscuits. I used the cheap ones that come 4 tubes bundled together. You will also need marshmallows(any kind you have will work), melted butter, cinnamon and sugar.

Have your children stretch out a biscuit as best them can and wrap it around a marshmallow. Brush each biscuit with butter and then sprinkle or roll them in a mixture of cinnamon and sugar. Bake your biscuits according to the directions on the tube. Remove from oven and cool a little before eating.

As they work and then enjoy share with them what each part represents.
The marshmallow represents Jesus and the biscuit is the tomb. Just as Jesus was put in the tomb, you put your biscuits in the oven. Have your children bit into there biscuit and notice that the marshmallow is gone, there biscuit /tomb is hollow. As they enjoy there sweet treat share with them the goodness of Jesus' resurrection and the empty tomb.


Monday, April 6, 2009

Dear Ladies,
I have sat down several times and started a letter only to never finish it. I have not forgotten you nor have I given up writing altogether.

The children and I are on our own for the month. Eric is in Afghanistan, so that means cereal for dinner, movies and pizza. We have been to see the cherry blossoms and have dinner with friends planned, and maybe a road trip to visit the University of Virginia, to help the time past.

On Sunday we had the great blessing of having our first service in our new building. I was very busy with the babies in the nurseries. We had a record number of children with a total near 40 in our second service. I never even got a chance to peek in at the worship service, but my day will come. Until then I will love everyone babies and will be glad for three beautiful rooms to care for them.

Of all the letters I send the recipes are the most popular, so I will add one to this update.
One of our favorite soups is "Brown Jug Cheese Soup"

4 chicken bouillon cubes
1 cup celery, chopped
1 cup onion, chopped
1 qt water
2 1/2 cups potatoes, raw and cubed
1 (20 oz) pkg. frozen mixed veggies(we like broccoli)
1 lb Velveeta cheese
2 cans cream of chicken soup
Put all but the soup and cheese in a large soup pot and cook until potatoes and veggies are tender. Stir in soup and cheese(cut into large cubes). Stir until cheese is melted.

Add a loaf of bread and dinner is done. This is an easy recipe to put together early in the day and heat up just before dinner. We still have some cool days ahead that make good days to have soup for dinner, so enjoy.


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