Sunday, January 27, 2008

FYI - Announcement to follow...

Watch the whole slide show people. It is not just the first set of pictures on the grid. There's more. So quitchercryin' or I am going to call the Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaambulance!
Thank you.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Friday, January 25, 2008


Think about the following story. Who do you need to forgive?

The Sands of Forgiveness by Author Unknown

A story tells that two friends were walking through the desert. During some point of the journey they had an argument, and one friend slapped the other one in the face.
The one who got slapped was hurt, but without saying anything, wrote in the sand:
They kept on walking until they found an oasis, where they decided to take a bath. The one who had been slapped got stuck in the mire and started drowning, but the friend saved him.
After he recovered from the near drowning, he wrote on a stone:
The friend who had slapped and saved his best friend asked him, "After I hurt you, you wrote in the sand and now, you write on a stone, why?"
The other friend replied "When someone hurts us we should write it down in sand where winds of forgiveness can erase it away. But, when someone does something good for us, we must engrave it in stone where no wind can ever erase it."

Corrie Ten Boom, a Christian woman who survived a Nazi concentration camp during the Holocaust, said, "Forgiveness is to set a prisoner free, and to realize the prisoner was you."

Matthew 18: 21-22 (KJV) --- Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?
Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Healthy even tastes better!

I read a quote somewhere that "Nothing tastes as good as thin feels". Well, I think in most cases that would be true, but not tonight. We had such an awesome dinner. I made chicken fajitas. For those that have been keeping up on my blog, you may have noticed our goal of losing weight, eating and thinking healthier, etc. Well, I am happy to report that we are doing very well! We've cut out all blatant sugars, traded white bread, pasta, rice, etc. for brown rice and whole grain, 100% wheat products. We have also been doing very good on drinking lots of water. No soda - not even diet! Here's basically what our fajitas consisted of:

Boneless, skinless chicken tenderloin - grilled in a little EVOO with spices and seasonings

Green, red, and yellow bell pepper

Red onion

Cherry tomatoes

Roma tomatoes

100% Whole wheat tortilla

NO Cheese (that's a hard one for us to control, so I just skipped it tonight)

Light sour cream - just a little

Home-made salsa - I may have outdone myself. It was sooooooooo good!

I am all about home-cooked meals and family eating together, so that has not changed. I am all about flavor and color - that has become better! At first, I think our taste buds were numb from all of the salts, sugars and additives. Now that it's worn off, I feel like there is a whole new world of flavors out there for us to experience. Oh yeah, we love food - but we also want to take care of ourselves. What are you doing or can you do to be healthier with/for your loved ones?

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

This week's blog challenge: RECIPE!
We all dig out special recipes during the holidays - some that we ONLY use at holiday time. Why do we make those dishes every year? Where did the recipe originate? Does someone request it? Would it just NOT be the holidays without it? What memories of this recipe do you have from your childhood?
Then there are the stock recipes that we ALWAYS keep ingredients on hand for. What's one of yours? What's your family's favorite dish? What do you ALWAYS make when you have company for dinner? Are you known for a certain recipe that people always request?
Challenge issued by Stacy Kocur
There are definitely some foods that I miss and request from my mom - holiday or not. She lives in Washington state and I really miss her cooking! My mom is Korean and is one of the best cooks I know. One of the main things I ask for is her eggrolls. I even scrapped a page about it. I will have to scan a picture and add it later. Anyway, there's just something special about her seasoning and how she's not chincy with the meat when she makes an eggroll. I mean hello - if I wanted a bland eggroll that's practically vegetarian, I'd go to the Food Court right? My mom's eggrolls are like no other. She is practically famous for them. When she does come to visit she usually makes extra and then we freeze them. Not as good as hot out of the pan, but good!
My family has several favorites, but when it comes to requests during birthdays and such it's always my Chicken Taquitos. Again, the key is to not be chincy with the meet. I have several friends that request this for crops or potlucks and I even made about 250 one time for a girl's graduation. I asked if I could do anything to help with the party and that was her request!
Since we are big foodys in this house, there is so much more I should be mentioning, but I am going to stop because I am already craving these foods now!

Monday, January 21, 2008

Martin Luther King, Jr. had a you?

Today is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and I just got done watching a tribute on t.v. with my daughters. I wanted them to know why they had a day off today. Although we homeschool, we are with a charter group and we have the day off. As they watched the show, they saw how poorly and unjustly people were treated because of their skin color - just their skin color!
We are a multi-national family. I am Korean, French and German. My husband is Bolivian. My husband and I grew up here in the U.S. I want my daughters to realize that some people will judge them by their skin color, by the shape of their eyes, or the sound of their last name. They will be judged because of their Christian beliefs. They will be judged.
I want them to know though, that it is not right. I want them to know that it is more important that they are caring and compassionate toward others, that they are forgiving and honest, that they are true to God and to themselves. I want them to believe that they are blessed and that they can be anything they want to be, that they can trust and believe in Christ and not be afraid to say so. I want them to look at others and trust. I have a dream for my children - do you?
Taken from the "I Have A Dream" speech by Martin Luther King, Jr.
"...I say to you today, my friends, so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident; that all men are created equal."
I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood...
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
I have a dream today...
I have a dream that one day... little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.
I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exhalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together..."

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Just some chalk...

and they were content for hours! Someone graciously passed on a whole case of jumbo, colored, sidewalk chalk. My daughter was in heaven! She couldn't wait to get her hands on them. "You're going to have to be careful. It'll make a lot of dust.", says me

"I know.", she replies

"It always gets yours allergies up (she's got asthma and she's allergic to dust)."

"I know!", she replies again.

A very good friend of mine came by with all of her daughters and told me that they were there to kidnap us and take us to lunch. Who am I to turn down a free lunch? LOL So, off we went. It wasn't long before we were back to the house and my good friend and I hadn't finish visiting.

"Taryn, go get the new chalks and play outside with the girls.", I called.

*Cheers of excitement ring out from the other room.

They were out there for at least an hour before I even thought of them again! I decided I better check on them.

I was amazed. I had moved our van so that the girls would have plenty of space to be creative. Wow. There were tracings of each of the girls. Each labeled by name. There were sentiments of love and cute hearts and flowers. A very nicely quoted "Girls Rule, Boys Drool" to one side. I was impressed.

I immediately thought of Taryn's asthma when I saw her covered head to toe in blue and pink chalk dust.

"How's your breathing?", I asked. "It's okay mom..." she answered with kind of a sheez attitude.

Later on, after the girls were gone, I noticed she was weezing. I told her she needed to take a bath and then do a treatment. "You're weezing.", I told her. "I know, but it was worth it Mama. It was so much fun. I felt like a was an artist and that I didn't have to worry if I messed up because it was just chalk and we could always erase it. I loved it, Mom."

Wow. I thought about what my little one said as she went off to take her bath. What if we lived our life that way? It's like Anne says in Anne of Green Gables to Marilla Cuthbert, "Marilla, isn't it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?" She could live life to the fullest because it was new and fresh. There was room for mistakes. I remember watching a show called "Simon and Land of Chalk Drawings" I think it came on Captain Kangaroo. Everything Simon drew, came to life. Sometimes, he got himself into a situation that seemed like doom. In the end, he always came out okay because it was chalk. It always helped him to learn a real life lesson.

So whatever goals or resolutions you've set this year and feel like you've already failed - try, try again! You can always start again!

Monday, January 14, 2008

So...I noticed this leaf on my tree...

it may seem like an ordinary leaf to you, but I think it is extra-ordinary. You see, for the last month or so, we have been having some terrible wind storms. As a matter of fact, right now the wind is blowing at about 30 mph here and it is daytime. At night, it's enough to shake you out of your bed! We had some winds a few weeks back that even made the headlines. We are right at the Cajon pass and there were several semi trucks that were blown over on its' sides.
This little leaf is the last one left on the tree. I will post a picture of the whole tree in case you don't believe me. When I noticed the leaf, because of it being the only one and because of the beautiful color, it made me think.

Sometimes, we may feel like that little leaf. How many storms have you endured? Are the winds and torments of life beating at you from all sides? The wind is a powerful force. Remember what happened to Job's children? (Job 1:18, 19) We must remember that God controls the winds, even the winds and storms in our life. Those winds obey him. (Matthew 8:26) He is in control. Sometimes, during a trial in life, I think that it is the worst time of my life - only to find out later that God was preparing me for the best time of my life!
Now, who knows why this leaf happened to still be on our tree when he should've been gone by now? I don't know. But it made me think. It made me realize that I need to continue to trust God no matter what. During the good times and during the storms - trust Him. Maybe, just maybe, that was the job that the Lord had for that little leaf. To remind me to trust Him.

Romans 8:28 Reminds us: "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."

Thursday, January 10, 2008


So, I didn't make it back right away like I said I would, but here I am now! Did you miss me? I have wanted to come and write for so many days now. I have been sooooo busy though. School is back in session, church has a whole new calendar of activities to plan and fill, and I have a jillion other things to do on top of it all.
Marco and I have already had our talk about 2008 and what it will hold for us. I feel so blessed to have a husband that is always willing to improve or make changes when he feels it is necessary.
The top 3 books that I am reading right now are: the Bible, The Total Money Make Over by Dave Ramsey, and the Best Life Diet by Bob Greene.
I am excited to be studying the Bible this year and specifically looking for God's promises and claiming them. I want to surround myself with people that are positive. I have always said that if you don't come away a better person by being with a friend, you need to quit spending time with that "friend". Of course, I am not perfect, I can not always be on "top-side" - but I also do not go around with a chip on my shoulder or think that someone is always out to get me. That would be too exhausting! I have known people like that and make it a point not to spend too much time in their presence. God is good and has surrounded me with people that I can learn from. They have been examples and an encouragement to me and I want to be the same for others.
The Total Money Make Over is a book that has been on the Top Seller list. Dave Ramsey is a Christian that has dealt with financial highs and lows. He teaches you how to live a debt free life. He always says that you need to live like noone else today, so that you may live like noone else tomorrow. That means making some sacrifices, living without, sticking with a budget, and living by a plan. Sound like too much? No, I think it's just right. Exactly what we need right now.
The Best Life Diet is a book by Bob Greene. He is the trainer that has become well-known by working with Oprah. I chose to read his book out of all the others, because his thinking and way of life seems to be the most balanced and practical. He teaches you how to improve your nutrition, change those bad habits, address the over-eating and under-exercising, and balance it all to help you have a healthier life. So far, we have been doing great! I have cut out all white/blatant flours and sugars from our diet. We have switched to lean meats and fish, added more fruits and vegetables, drink tons of water, added a vitamin supplement, and started really being active with an exercise schedule.
None of these things matter at all if we don't have God at the center of our lives. One of the main reasons we are making these changes are so that we can take care of ourselves so that we can take care of our members and family in Christ.
Lots of changes this year. Will it be easy? No. Will it be fun? Sometimes. Will it be worth it? Definitely.