Whenever we're short on time or having friends for the weekend... and I need an absolutely delicious but quick to prepare dinner, I always turn to my amazing and easy beef taco meat recipe.   It's always a favorite and I love how those who try it for the first time are surprised and delighted by the unexpected ingredient. The main ingredient in standard taco fare is usually ground beef.  I make a delicious southwest chicken meal, too.  But for the beef lovers, this is a standout with a myriad of wonderful flavors.   Since tomorrow is Cinco de Mayo... you may have … [Read more...]

  Have you had a weary week? Are you running on fumes?     Often we are incredibly busy with demands of work, family, and home.  We feel we can hardly breathe, let alone sing. Yet, our Creator God, the One Who keeps our world and our galaxy precisely spinning, the One who counts every hair on your head, He sings over you in JOY! The Lord will take delight in you,     and in his love he will give you new life. He will sing and be joyful over you... Zephaniah 3:17 (GNT) There is something so sweet, so loving, so powerful in those words.  Just by reading them I feel loved, … [Read more...]

  Easter was over.  Another week came and went.  And I still was in love with my pretty Easter centerpiece.  It had been the star of my spring tablescape. And though I love eggs for spring, it was time to put away the eggs.  As I stood there looking at my table and wondering how I might change it up for a Mother's Day tablescape... I had a lightbulb moment! I didn't need to start all over from scratch!  I just needed to tweak that sweet but simple Easter tablescape and centerpiece!   That's the thing... instead of putting everything away and having an empty table or having to think up a … [Read more...]

    Here we are the week AFTER Easter and I find myself reflecting on some of the events leading up to Jesus' death and resurrection. I think that's the way it was for Jesus' friends and followers, too.  Sometimes we see things in hindsight that were right in front of us but we just didn't see them. Jesus said a lot of things that night of the last supper.  If it wasn't enough that he humbled himself to wash his disciples' feet, he also told them about things to come that were unfathomable and challenging even for us to process when we know the whole story.  You can read all about it in … [Read more...]

  Have you ever had a hard day and out of the blue a stranger flashed you a big smile as you entered a building?  Have you sent a friend an encouraging text or message? Have you lent a helping hand only to have the person you assisted express overwhelming gratitude for your small kindness? When I came across these wonderful life words by Zig Ziglar... Among the things you can give and still keep are your word, a smile, and a grateful heart. immediately I remembered that the best things we can give are not only FREE for us to give... but those gifts return to us in double measure. So in the spirit of … [Read more...]

    There you are... standing in line at the grocery store. There they are... beautiful blossoms beckoning you to take them home. You hear their whispers, "I'm so pretty, your house needs me." "You know you want me... take me home with you." But, you remember that you have no idea how to make a tulip arrangement.  And you tell yourself, "Flower arranging is not for the faint of heart." Pshaw! You may never have successfully arranged flowers before in your life.  But TODAY!  Today you will make a stunning floral centerpiece and it will be the FIRST of many, many more to … [Read more...]

  He is risen! He is risen indeed!   I love this greeting exchanged by believers of the early church.  In our home, when we awake on Easter morning, those are the first words we exchange. It's a wonderful remembrance that Jesus came with a purpose and did exactly what he came to do and said he would do. It lifts our hearts, gives us hope, and reminds us that we can trust and believe our loving God and Savior, Jesus Christ.   But, what about those first followers of Jesus?   They walked and followed and listened to Jesus speak about this new kingdom he was preparing.  They heard … [Read more...]

  Years ago there was a comedy showing at the theater that was uproariously funny to most of the movie goers, yet I slid further and further down in my seat. All the hilarity and crazy antics were blanketed with impending doom. That was the day that I discovered that it doesn't matter what the situation is, light-hearted, funny, or dark... I have an issue with impending doom.     Maybe you relate.  I'm guessing that you have been in a spot where you were overwhelmed with dread.  You had to face something that you absolutely did not want to face. When we think about Jesus' last … [Read more...]

  Do you dread having to host a holiday meal like Easter brunch? One of my favorite things to do is to open my home to guests and serve them a delicious meal at a thoughtfully decorated table. It's an expression of my love and the creativity comes straight from my heart. Because I know everyone doesn't share my confidence, I can't wait to show you how to.... Create an Elegant Easter Tablescape on a Small Budget. You really can be frugal and fabulous!   Everything I share is easy to do... I'm not one for time-consuming and complicated projects. If you peruse Pinterest you'll see … [Read more...]

  I'm not much for pink.  Are you?  Except for pink tulips... oh. my. goodness! They totally make me weak in the knees. Today I want to show you how to Turn a Plain Pot of Tulips into a Beautiful Easter Basket Garden.     I LOVE pink tulips and my favorites are the May blooming pink Lily Flowering Tulips. I had huge swaths of them planted at my first home only to have them bloom and die in a day because of an unexpected 80-degree day in early May. Disappointing for sure, but it didn't stop my love affair with them. Pink Lily Flowering Tulips are not found in the stores, ever. … [Read more...]

    Right now I feel like I'm in the midst of a teaching moment. One where I am the student. It started when I was chatting with my husband about the blog. I have a sense that I need to step up my game.  Improve some technical aspects of the website, educate myself on a few areas where I lack expertise, and overall, be more diligent and purposeful in my work.  And then I said, "But I don't think God wants me to hustle."   There wasn't anything earth-shaking about that conversation or my statements. I'm guessing that when we are in the process of being molded by God, the process is pretty … [Read more...]

  Isn't it fun to decorate your home for spring? I'm so excited to show you how you can make this inexpensive and whimsical mossy wall bunny for your spring or Easter decor.  It goes together pretty quickly and doesn't require a bunch of exotic craft products you'll never use again. You might need a quick trip to Hobby Lobby or Michael's, but if you do... you can fly in and out and don't forget to use your coupon there.     My favorite thing about this adorable bunny is that although it's fabulous for Easter decorating, it has staying power for all of spring.  And if you live in the … [Read more...]

  Want to know a secret? I just figured on how to make the most beautiful... yes... perfect mossy eggs. Even better... I'm going to share the secret with you. But, first... let's just look at this pretty spring vignette.     It's filled with some of my favorite things... pussy willows, an old cement planter, moss, birds, eggs, bunnies... and even a little gold.  Okay... maybe a lot of gold.     This year I am all about moss for spring.  It's a great way to infuse life and spring into my home decor without spending a lot of money. A bag of moss, … [Read more...]

  Each day I read a few devotional meditations as part of my time with God in the morning. One of them has music videos that are included, but it is rare I ever view them. This morning, for some reason I was nudged to click the music video open.  It was good.  And I was grateful to have engaged in worship to God with it.  When it was finished, as always happens on YouTube, a collage of other music options came up.  I noticed a song we sing in church, at least I was hoping it was the same song and decided to listen to it as … [Read more...]

  You'll never guess my accidental discovery for cleaning the tarnish off silver.     It all started after a trip to a thrift store. This particular thrift store is notorious for using wide packaging tape to tape sets of things together... glass, pottery, metal, plastic... they use it on everything. Have you ever tried to get that tape gunk off from items?  It can be a real challenge.  On plastic... you can just about forget it. This week I picked up a set of tiny bowls, the kind you use to hold pre-measured spices and such for baking and cooking, for a dollar.  I also picked … [Read more...]

  Are you settling for second best? God intends for us to live life fully. He doesn't want us to settle for second best. Sometimes it's really good to read scripture out of context. It's then the Ah-Ha moments can come. That's what happened when I read this verse.... God did not keep back his own Son, but he gave him for us. If God did this, won’t he freely give us everything else? Romans 8:32 As we make our approach to Easter, we're contemplating this amazing love that God has for us and the significance of Jesus giving His life to pay the price of our sin. When God sent Jesus to earth to be … [Read more...]

  Last night we had one of those long rumbly spring thunderstorms.  Just what we needed to clean the air and the winter from our neighborhood.  I love when Easter arrives late and we get to enjoy decorating our homes for Easter and spring without having to shovel snow or wishing winter away. Recently, I created a lovely Easter centerpiece and tablescape and now I'm working on spring and Easter decorating at home.   This week's Project Inspire{d} link party was filled with all kinds of Easter ideas, but I was fascinated with your eggstraordinary creativity.  Such cute ideas for decorating eggs, using … [Read more...]