Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Post 31!!

This is it.

My final post for the July 2012 Ultimate Blog Challenge. I did it!! 31 posts in 31 days.

The challenge builds discipline. It also introduces you to other bloggers and leads you to blogs you might not otherwise see. It's a great experience.

One piece of advice I would give to anyone who tries the challenge in the future is this:

Don't just get your posts done. Make it a point to read and comment on other blogs. You'll meet many interesting people.

I had planned as part of the challenge this time to read and comment on at least two blogs a day. I didn't manage it everyday. Now and then I got to four or five blogs. I learned a lot and was touched by many stories, both humorous and sad.

As a side benefit, the more blogs I commented on, the more readers I got.

I recommend the challenge to any blogger. Just remember: the more you put in, the more you get out. :)

Have a blessed day!!

"Go to jail. Go directly to jail....

Monopoly is a capricious game.

One time it will seem that the Matthew principle (to whomever has much more will be given) is at work. Another time there will be a dramatic turnaround.

One game you build up a lot and then are caught without cash when you land on somebody's hotel.

Another time you hold cash and can't earn any.

Or the exact opposite of either can happen.

It makes it hard to plan a strategy.

We are on a Monopoly kick at my house at the moment. My son is determined to conquer the game. He wants to win consistently -- and always must count his cash.  He wins about half the time, but that's not good enough.

It's hard to explain that some parts of the game -- like the dice rolls-- are out of the player's control.

Sometimes in real life it seems that some people are lucky and others can never catch a break. It's hard to remember that, sometimes, hard-working and determined people fail through no fault of their own. It can be easy to sit in judgement and call them lazy or say they made the wrong choices. It just doesn't seem like people who try hard will fall short. But sometimes things are beyond their control.

That is why, I think, we are told not to judge. We just don't know the circumstances.

Have you seen situations like that?

This is my 30th post for the July 2012 Ultimate Blog Challenge.

Weeds in the Garden?

In an earlier blog post I spoke about how I had planted things in my garden but am not sure what they look like when they only have leaves. With some  things, I am not sure if they are food plants or weeds.

Well with the help of a few gardening friends, I have cleared out a lot of weeds, but there are a few plants I am still not sure of.

I had my son take pictures of them.

Will this grow into something useful or should I get rid of it? There is nothing in the yard that looks anything like it.

Or how about this one?

This (below) might be a tomato plant, but the leaves are different shape from the one plant that I know is tomato because I started it in the house. It had six companions that didn’t survive the hardening off process so I did direct sow some more, but I thought I had planted the same variety.

So do I keep these or compost them? I don’t know. Do you?

This is my 29th post for the Ultimate Blog Challenge. Two more to go. Today!

Making Disciples

I am in school again. Right now my class is reading the book Traveling Together: A Guide for Disciple Forming Congregations by Jeffrey D. Jones.

This isn't going to be a review of the book, though I do recommend it.

What I want to talk about is how God puts resources we need in our paths. This year at CYC we are focusing on the great commission
19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
So a book on disciple making is very appropriate for me just now. Not only that, but we are putting this theme verse in a "traveling" context. Our theme is GPS: God's Positioning System.

This year, too, I am more mindful of the conference's purpose as a disciple-making community so the book is doubly appropriate.

This isn't the first year this has happened. I remember at least three other years when a theme-related book came to me from a source unrelated to the conference and gave me ideas.

When has God provided you with just the right resource?

This is my 28th post for the Ultimate Blog Challenge.

Monday, July 30, 2012


Jordan is, per usual, entering the 4H County Fair.

The deadline for entries is in exactly 47 minutes so he is busily filling in his name and address along with lot numbers and entry titles. I get to provide encouragement and technical support, but basically he has to do it himself. That's a good thing really.

Now I just need to teach him how not to procrastinate so he can avoid last minute stress!

Ideas welcome.

Gotta run!!

This is my 27th post for the July 2012 Ultimate Blog Challenge. Hoping to finish!!


I got tagged in this game by two people. Holly Rousseau of Aggravation Station and Patricia Swanepoel of Living Life, My Way. I am going to respond to both at once. :)

The rules are simple. There are only four of them:
   1. Post the rules
   2. Answer the questions the tagger has set for me in her post.
   3. Create 11 new questions to ask those who I'm going to tag.
   4. Tag 11 people on the Facebook page with a link to this point.

Holly asked me:
1.  What are your guilty pleasures (you know those ones you love but are ashamed to admit) for the following:  Movie, Music and TV show.  Movie – Desert Warrior, the worst movie ever made, Music –I am pretty eclectic in my tastes, but don’t think I feel ashamed of any of it, TV Show Wife Swap (though I don’t even know if it is still on.)
2.  What's one thing you did as a child/teenager that you know disappointed your parents? Lied about my struggles in middle school English (brought about due to laziness)
3.  If you could have one super power, what would it be? Flying, I think. That would be fun and the views would be awesome.
4.  What is your biggest fear? Being insignificant, I’d say
5.  If you could go for a beer or coffee with any one person, dead or alive, living or fictional, who would it be? Ann Hasseltine, the missionary woman from the early 1800s whom I reenact.
6.  What song do you want played at your funeral? Amazing Grace on the bagpipes would be beautiful or “My Jesus I Love Thee”
7.  What's one mundane thing you have to day just about every single day that you wish you could do without? Laundry
8.  What talent do you wish you possessed that you currently don't? The ability to wow a crowd with public speaking
9.  What did you wear to your high school prom?  Describe your outfit. It was a flowered pink dress with a very full, floor-length skirt and short puffy sleeves.
10.  If you didn't require extra training or schooling, what would your dream job be? Missionary
11.  What is your favourite household chore? Gardening, if that counts

Patricia asked:
1. What is the best and worst memory of your childhood? My best memories are of camp, especially the love I felt at New England Baptist Youth Conference (now Christian Youth Conference at Ocean Park) Worst – being bullied and called a prostitute in jr. high school.
2. Who was your first crush? James Fogg, third grade. I have no idea where he is now.
3. If you could visit any country in the world, where would you go? Burma, the adopted land of Adoniram Judson and Ann Hasseltine (and I get to go in Dec. 2013!)
4. What is your idea of paradise? Hours on an ocean beach with some alone time and some friends coming and going
5. What is the most important thing you have ever done in your life? Made the decision to follow Christ
6. What are six words your friends would use to describe you? Easily flustered, geeky, organizer, strong, persistent, religious
7. Who was your favorite teacher in school and why? I had a lot of good teachers. I’ll say Paul Goodhue. I never took his class, but he explained other teachers’ assignments well. (and he was a fabulous Sunday School teacher)
8. If you could do anything in the world, what would it be? A world tour by boat
9. If you were to be reincarnated, what would you come back as?  A frog, I think. They must have a cool perspective on the world.
10. Who is the most important person in your life? Jesus, followed by my son and husband
11. Do you have any pets? What are they and what are your most favorite memories of them? I don’t have any, but I will be getting my son a Betta fish.

Now the eleven (!) questions I'd like my fellow bloggers to answer for me are: 
  1. Where is your happy place?
  2. What hobby do you indulge in?
  3. If you could eat one food every day without negative consequences what would it be?
  4. What would be essential for you to have on a desert island with you?
  5. How did you choose your favorite color?
  6. Do you dance? What kind of dancing?
  7. What is one issue you are passionate about?
  8. What is your favorite real life animal story?
  9. What book has made an impact on your life?
  10. What do you think is the most important thing to teach children?
  11. What mode of travel do you like best?
Now the tagging thing. (Please note: Only play if you want to. No obligation.)

Loralle Hutton, Portable Business Lifestyle
Debra Jason, The Write Direction
Connie Mitan, Sunfire's Ramblings
Donald Borsen, Rebooting this Crazy Life
Jackie Bledsoe, Jackie Bledsoe, Jr.
Steve Rice, True Spiritual Awakening
Riki Cleveland, Refreshingly Riki
Salvatore Constantino, The Daily Retort
Roy A. Ackerman, Cerebrations
Debra Gray Walter, The Romantic Vineyard
Alessa Bertoluzzi -- Carolina Heartstrings

Have fun with that.... and if anyone else wants to answer the questions, I'd love to get to know you a little better, too.


Sunday, July 29, 2012

Hymn for Sunday: Oh, Worship the King

We sang this powerful old hymn in church this morning. Parts of it had been rattling around in my head for days, but I hadn't expected to find it on the order of worship. Perhaps I should not have been surprised.

Oh, Worship the King
By: Robert Grant

Oh, worship the King, all glorious above.
Oh, gratefully sing his power and his love;
Our shield and defender, the Ancient of Days,
Pavilioned in splendor and girded with praise.

Oh, tell of his might; oh, sing of his grace,
Whose robe is the light, whose canopy space;
His chariots of wrath the deep thunderclouds form,
And dark is his path on the wings of the storm.

Your bountiful care what tongue can recite?
It breathes in the air, it shines in the light,
It streams from the hills, it descends to the plain
And sweetly distills in the dew and the rain.

Frail children of dust, and feeble as frail,
In you do we trust, nor find you to fail;
Your mercies, how tender, how firm to the end,
Our maker, defender, redeemer, and friend!

                Tune: Hanover  1st Published in: 1833

The lines that had particularly worked their way into my thoughts this week are :

His chariots of wrath the deep thunderclouds form,
And dark is his path on the wings of the storm.

I shall have to reflect on them to see if I can discover why they have been coming to mind.

I do love this hymn, though. It really gives an impression of God's majesty and power.

What is your favorite hymn?

Friday, July 27, 2012

Sisterhood of Bloggers

 Cheri, at Idle Chatter honored me with this award  I have enjoyed meeting so many terrific people through the Ultimate Blog Challenge and reading their helpful, humourous and touching blogs. This just adds to the fun. Thank you, Cheri, for including me in this award.

Sisterhood Rules:
1. Thank the giver
2. Post 7 things about yourself
3. Pass the award on to 7 other bloggers and let them know they’ve been nominated
4. Include the logo of the award in a post or on your blog

1. Thanks again, Cheri. I really am touched by the award.

2. Seven things about me .... hmmm....
   I love working with teenagers and young adults.
   I am a geek. A proud one. I watch Star Trek and larp and know how 
             to make boffer weapons. I read science fiction and fantasy and 
             watch those kinds of movies, too, when I watch any.
   I don't own a microwave oven, the TV doesn't get channels, the  only 
             cell phone in the house is for my business and I have to go to 
             the library (or somewhere) to access the internet. Friends say 
             I need to join the 21st century.
   Once upon a time, I was a special needs teacher. Now I homeschool 
              my son and do a little advocacy and parents' rights training on 
              the side.
    I love Jesus.
    Someday, I want to see Alaska; but my next planned trip is to Burma.
    I have a tendency to get lost when I drive.

3. This is tough, choosing seven blogs out of the many great ones I have encountered, but here goes. These are all worth checking out:

Kebba, Upbeat Spiritual Living
Jenna, Mind, Body, Soul
Paula D'Andrea, Rock Your Life
Kerri Ellis, Creating My Own Little Nirvana
Johanna, River Runs Through It
Lisa,  Taber's Truths
Melissa, The Bright Side

A note to these winners, I chose you because your blog has been touching, uplifting or useful. I don't want in anyway to obligate you to anything, so if you don't want to participate further, that's fine. Just know you have made a difference to a least one person. Thanks.

4. I tried, but I can't figure out how. :( Sorry

Have a blessed day!!

This is my 25th post for the Ultimate Blog Challenge.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Being Mom

Sometimes, I think my son forgets he has more than one parent.

For example: The child has two soundly sleeping parental units, and only ever calls out "Mom! Mom!" when he has thrown up all over the bathroom. Dad sleeps right through it, because he's not "Mom".

I know I should feel flattered really....but after a repeatedly interrupted night's sleep, I still want to change my name. To "Dad" maybe :).

Of course, such dependence is a blessing and a joy inherently, even when I can't see it. And it won't last much longer. Even last night, the boy cleaned himself the first time without calling me. Soon he'll be taking care of himself all the time ......and then he'll be gone and I'll miss him.

So, I remember that this, too, shall pass and keep my own name.

(and try to take a nap today)

Oh....Jordan's feeling better and enjoying his popsicles....

Have a blessed day!

This is my 23rd post for the Ultimate Blog Challenge.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Fight Against Cancer

Cancer is an ugly word because it names an ugly disease.

I lost my mom, Anne Picone,  to ovarian cancer on March 15, 2011. Eleven days later, my friend Peggy Goodhue succombed to lung cancer. Right now, my sister, Pam Turner,  is battling colon cancer. Over the years, various other family members and friends have fought the disease. Some have won, some have lost.

Great strides have been made in the treatment of some types of cancer. Others are still resistant to the doctors' best efforts. More research is needed and that means more money. In these days, it can be hard to decide where to donate hard-earned money. But so many of us have been touched by cancer. I hope you will consider this request.

Paul Goodhue is riding in the Pan Mass Challenge, a two-day bike ride organized to raise money for cancer research. He rides in memory of his wife Peggy and in honor of my sister Pam. A link to his "Pace Line" is below. He has worked and his dedication and riding stamina are amazing. Please consider supporting him or one of the other riders in the PMC. Thank you.

Paul Goodhue's PMC ride.

Have a blessed day!

This is my 22 post in the July 2012 Ultimate Blog Challenge.

Monday, July 23, 2012


I planted a vegetable garden for the first time this year. Some of the plants are doing well, others not so well. Good thing we like green beans.

My garden also has some plants I can't identify. Most likely, many of them are weeds, but I can't tell them apart from some of the plants I direct sowed into the garden. Every time someone who knows about gardening comes over, I ask them to look at my beds and tell me what they think are weeds. But I am afraid to pull too much up, in case I remove something that might produce good food.

It reminds me of the parable of the weeds in Matthew 13. Somewhat. Of course, an enemy didn't sow in my garden. And the farmer in the parable didn't pull the weeds because he didn't want to uproot the wheat, not because he didn't know which plants were weeds.

God knows who the good and evil people are. This parable seems to tell us that, at least in some cases, he is letting evil people be so as not to uproot or harm good people. It's an interesting idea to get our heads around, especially when we hear of shootings and dictators.

It makes me wonder, and meditate and pray.

God has said "Vengeance is mine, I will repay." So when we face evil we are to return it with good. God assures us that in the end the "wheat" will be gathered in and the "weeds" cast out. Of course, the analogy only goes so far. Weeds can't turn into wheat, but through Christ evil people can be turned to the good. I pray that it will be so.

This is my 21st post for the Ultimate Blog Challenge.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Song for Sunday

I had the privilege of worshipping both in my home church and as a visitor in an urban church this morning.

At the second church, a little girl sang a song I had never heard before, though I guess in some churches it is a staple Sunday school song. It touched me deeply.

The chorus goes:

If anybody asks you who I am, who I am, who I am
If anybody asks you who I am
Tell them I'm a child of God.

The verse talks about God's riches and how much better they are than rubies and diamonds. It is so true.

Here's one rendition of it, though I wish you all could have heard the one I heard this morning.

Have a blessed day!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Weaving God's Love Across Cultures

I went to a multi-cultural festival today.

There were booths with dozens of churches represented and people from places like Bhutan, Nagaland, Burma, Zambia, Haiti and Costa Rica. There was ethnic food, clothes and jewelry for sale, and singing in many languages.

The highlight of the day was a baptism service. Candidates from four churches (and four countries) were immersed by their own pastors as we all participated in the liturgy. The prayer was in Karen. No one translated, we knew God understood.

It was a beautiful testimony to the universality of the gospel message and I am glad my son and I got to be a part of it.

When have you seen God at work among people who are different from each other?

I was at the Multi-Cultural Festival reperesenting the Christian Youth Conference at Ocean Park a fabulous two week conference for high school teens that begins August 5 on the beautiful southern coast of Maine.

This is my 19th post for the Ultimate Blog Challenge.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Family Tree

I thought I knew my son well.

I mean, I homeschool. I am with him almost constantly. I know where he is and what he is doing, unless one of us is on a  trip or off at camp - about two weeks a year. I have multiple conversations with him most days.

But he still surprised me yesterday.

A few weeks ago he had seen a poster for "Genealogy Nights" at our local library and made the comment, "We should go to that." So yesterday I reminded him that the program was last night and asked if still wanted to go. "Yeah, sure." Not very enthusiastic, but definite.

So we went. He decided to look up a specific thing, the names of his grandmother's parents. I knew we could get that information easily by asking relatives, but I let him do it for practice. It proved to be trickier than expected, but then we hit the jackpot -- finding not only the names we were looking for but a family tree going back to the 1400s.

Jordan grabbed a generations chart and began feverishly copying down names, continuing even after he had been reassured that we could print out the chart next week. He was insistent -- "We might not find this again!"

Here's the thing. I had no idea that Jordan was interested in genealogy. When I asked him today what sparked this interest he just said he wanted to see who were related to and if it included anybody famous.

OK, then. As I said, I thought I knew my kid -- but may I don't know him quite as well as I thought.

How have your kids surprised you?

This is my 18th entry for the Ultimate Blog Challenge. One behind.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Ending Drunk Driving

Thirty people.

That’s how many are killed every day in the U.S. by drunk and drugged drivers.

Exactly two years ago on  July 17, 2009, Tom Serewicz was one of them. You can read my blog post of his story here.

It is in his memory that I post links to resources to help end drunk driving. It is my hope that no more young women will be left widows, no more small children will be left fatherless, no more mothers and fathers will get that horrifying phone call, no more siblings will have cause to cry because of such an avoidable situation.

And once more, I make the plea: designate a driver, sleep where you are drinking, don’t hesitate to take the keys. Many people will thank you for it. Including me.

I knew Tom because of the Christian Youth Conference at Ocean Park. 

This is my 17th post for the Ultimate Blog Challenge.

Iced Teas

I have been preparing iced tea lately, it being rather refreshing in these hot days. Rather than just drink it plain, I've been trying out some different flavors. Here are two of my more successful "recipes".

Mint Iced Tea

4  orange and black decaffienated tea bags
2 Bigelow Mint Medley tea bags
1 gallon of water
1 pound ice

In a large saucepan, place the tea bags and water. Bring to a rolling boil and boil for one minute.

Take pan off heat. Add ice. Let sit for 10 minutes. Remove tea bags. Refrigerate.
Add sweetener to taste. I like this one unsweetened.

Calming Iced Tea

5 orange and black decaffienated tea bags
1 tea bag of Yogi Calming tea
1 gallon of water
1 pound ice

In a large saucepan, place the tea bags and water. Bring to a rolling boil.

Take pan off heat. Add ice. Let sit for 10 minutes. Remove tea bags. Refrigerate.
Add sweetener to taste. I find this one best with a half teaspoon of sugar per glass.

What are your favorite iced teas?

Have a blessed day!

This is my 16th post for the Ultimate Blog Challenge.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Life Uncommon

In the youth ministry I work for, Christian Youth Conference at Ocean Park, we do a lot of singing. One of the campers' favorite songs is this one by Jewel. It expresses what we hope to do with the campers: teach them to be filled with faith and courage so that, in Christ, they can lead a

"Life Uncommon"
Don't worry mother, it'll be alright
And don't worry sister, say your prayers and sleep tight
It'll be fine friend of mine
It'll be just fine

Lend your voices only to sounds of freedom
No longer lend your strength to that which you wish to be free from
Fill your lives with love and bravery
And you shall lead a live uncommon

I've heard your anguish
I've heard your hearts cry out
We are tired, we are weary, but we aren't worn out
set down you chains, until only faith remains
Set down you chains 

And lend your voices only to sounds of freedom
No longer lend your strength to that
which you wish to be free from
Fill your lives with love and bravery
And you shall lead a life uncommon

There are plenty of people who pray for peace
But if praying were enough it would have come to be
Let your words enslave no one and the heavens will hush themselves
To hear out voices ring out clear
with sounds of freedom

Come on you unbelievers, move out of the way
there is a new army coming and we are armed with faith
To live, we must give
To live
And lend your voices only to sounds of freedom
No longer lend your strength to that which you wish to be free from
Fill your lives with love and bravery
And you shall lead...
Lend your voices only to sounds of freedom
No longer lend your strength to that which we with to be free from
Fill you lives with love and bravery
And you shall lead a life uncommon

Here's Jewel herself singing it: 

What songs do you use with teens?

Christian Youth Conference at Ocean Park is a two week program for high school teens meeting in August on the beautiful southern coast of Maine.

This is my 15th post for the July 2012 Ultimate Blog Challenge. 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Vegetables of Unknown Variety

We used to get most of our vegetables off the grocery store reduced rack. We ended up with some very good vegetables very cheaply. Usually one or two things in the bag would need parts cut out, but other than that they were fine.

They weren't labeled, though, so sometimes we would be eating stuff without knowing what to call it. "Vegetables of unknown variety" became a staple phrase in our house. We'd try to guess and we'd joke about them.

Now, we've joined a CSA. (For those who are new to the term CSA -- look here.)

We have been getting fresh vegetables and fruit every week -- in abundance. We split a half share from a local farm so we are paying less than $10 a week.

 Nothing is labeled and we get stuff we don't recognize. So we are still eating vegetables of unknown variety. Fresh, organic vegetables of unknown variety are just as good for a laugh as their reduced rack counterparts.

What food adventures have you had lately?

I love my CSA for their food and because they support the Pan -Mass Challenge. More on that next week.

This is my 14th post for the Ultimate Blog Challenge. I'm going for 31 posts in 31 days!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Cruise Control

I made a long trip today. I was driving someone else's car and it had cruise control, a feature I have never used before. It was kinda of neat.

It also had two settings.  One to restrict acceleration and one to stop deceleration (unless you applied the break.) Maybe this is typical, as I said I never used cruise control before. I suppose if you have a lead foot you might choose the first option to avoid speeding tickets. If you are a timid driver you might go for the second option so as not anger other drivers on the highway. Both useful things, but this post isn't really about driving.

I wonder if there is cruise control for our spiritual lives?

Some of us tend to get over busy, so maybe need habits that can make sure we don't "accelerate" to the point that we crowd God out of our lives.

Others tend to procrastinate or get lazy so maybe need mentors and friends who make sure we don't "decelerate" in our practice of spiritual disciplines.

Or maybe all of us need each of those settings at times.

Of course, cruise control is just a tool. It can only help so much. It is the driver who must be aware of the road conditions and other cars and adjust accordingly. We, too, must be aware of what is going on around us spiritually, what God wants us to be doing and how we need to change.

But I do think that there are tools that we can use to help. What have you found works?

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Article on Packing for Camp

Found this article that  I thought might be useful. My son's at camp now and it can be a challenge to know what to pack beyond the basics of clothes and bug spray...

Summer Camp Suitcase Essentials

It's that time of year again when parents are packing their children off to summer camps, and young people from across the world are flocking to the USA, Australia and other exotic countries to work as camp counsellors or sports instructors: the adventure of a lifetime.
Summer camps are an excellent way of teaching children to become more independent, acquiring new life skills, and developing new friendships or even romances during their teenage years.
Many people hold fond memories of the time spent mucking around with friends at summer camp. Whether it's playing games during the day, learning arts and crafts, or trying to sneak out to meet friends during the night, it's something all parents should let their kids live through.
Later on, as a camp counsellor the fun can continue, but with it comes more responsibility as you are in charge of ensuring entertainment and a positive overall experience for every camper.
Camp is sure to be much more fun and enjoyable if you take the right things with you. Make a list of all your camp essentials, buy all the items you think you might need, and pack in advance. Most camps will only provide very limited access to shops since accommodation, food and activity materials are provided as part of the fee, or your counsellor's remuneration.
Personal hygiene is even more important at summer camp than elsewhere. You or your child will be spending most of the time outdoors, playing sports, eating in a huge dining hall, and sharing a bunkhouse meaning lots of contact with dirt and germs.
Pack a large bottle of shower gel or two bars of soap, plenty of shampoo and conditioner, as well as an extra large tube of toothpaste, and 2 toothbrushes.
What you also need to remember is how exposed everyone is to constant sunshine and insects so high-strength sunscreen lotion, and a good insect repellent are key. Teach your child to apply these every day.
There'll inevitably be some free time at camp so make sure you're prepared for it by bringing some books, cards or board games to keep you entertained. Alternatively, keep a diary.
Electronics should be avoided. Most camps won't allow the use of smartphones, laptops or tablets anyway. MP3 players should be OK.
Focus on the practical when packing for summer camp. It's certainly not a fashion show. Think comfortable, slouchy clothing that's easy to hand wash if necessary. Layers are key so pack lots of T-shirts, cardigans and hoodies. Shorts, tracksuit bottoms and jeans are all great.
For sports, throw a few oversized mens T-shirts in the bag.
As it's vital to stay protected from the sun's harmful rays, sun hats or basketball caps are essential.
In terms of shoes, flip flops are OK to be worn to meals and some evening activities, while for the rest of the time it should be trousers.
Harvey McEwan writes to offer information and advice on a variety of areas, from summer camp packing, to mens T-shirts, to festival fashion tips. View Harvey's other articles to find out more.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Harvey_McEwan


In just three weeks, I'll be packing for camp myself. Teens and parents -- check out the Christian Youth Conference at Ocean Park -- two weeks of faith, friends, and fun on the beautiful southern coast of Maine.

This is my 12th post for the July 2012 Ultimate Blog Challenge.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

A Prayer of St. Augustine

I am a Baptist of the 21st Century.

Somehow, though, prayers written by a fourth century Catholic often express what I want to say.

I suppose it says something about the timelessness of these prayers and also about the things that connect us.

Here is one prayer by St. Augustine:

Look upon us, O Lord,and let all the darkness of our soulsvanish before the beams of thy brightness.Fill us with holy love,and open to us the treasures of thy wisdom.All our desire is known unto thee,therefore perfect what thou hast begun,and what thy Spirit has awakened us to ask in prayer.We seek thy face,turn thy face unto us and show us thy glory.Then shall our longing be satisfied,and our peace shall be perfect.(Augustine, 354 - 430)

What prayers speak to your heart? 

This is my 11th post for the July 2012 Ultimate Blog Challenge.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Ads on the Blog

AdSense picks the advertisements for my blog.

At the moment, there are ads for psychics on the left side of my blog. I don't believe in psychics or divination or fortunetelling at all  but they are one type of ad you can't block. (and this post will probably engender more of them because the word "psychic" is in it -- blargel)

Ironically, on the right side of my blog, there are ads for books about Christian missionary heros and overcoming temptation. A strange juxtaposition.

I think I will take the ads off my blog. They aren't really earning me anything anyways and maybe people are sick of the numbers of ads they encounter everyday.

That means I will need to change the look of my blog.

Any ideas?

Monday, July 9, 2012

New Cookies

Recently my brother's girlfriend brought Oreo-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies to my house. They were yummy. Here's a link to that recipe if you are interested.

Oreo -Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

My husband doesn't eat chocolate unless it is fair trade, but he was kind of intrigued by those cookies. So, for an anniversary gift (today's our 18th) I decided to try to make a similar cookie that he would want to eat. Here's my recipe.

  • 1 cup plus two tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 /2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon orange extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup Hershey's cinnamon chips
1 package vanilla creme cookies

Cream the butter and sugars together. Add egg and orange extract. Beat. Mix in flour, baking soda and salt. Add cinnamon chips.

For each cookie put one spoonful of dough on cookie sheet, place a vanilla creme cookie on top, and cover with another spoonful of dough. Leave plenty of room between cookies as they expand quite a lot. Bake at 375 degrees F for 11-13 minutes. Cool 5 minutes on sheet and then move to a wire rack until thoroughly cool. Makes 6 cookies.

They weren't too hard to do and they look and smell good. We'll see how my husband likes them. 

What new recipes have you tried lately?

For the whys and wherefors of my husband's choice not to eat regular chocolate, check out Slavery: A Global Investigation.

This is my ninth post (all caught up!) in the Ultimate Blog Challenge. I'm going for 31 blogs in July,