Simple Cookbook Project – Or so I thought

It seemed like such a good idea at the time… How many projects have you started with that thought in mind?  How many seemingly innocent brainstorms have resulted in just another item on the To Do list that never ends?  Well I did it to myself.  Just like the audio tapes that needed converting, the scrapbooks that need building, and the beads the need necklacing (is that a word?); I have generated another project that needs doing.  So in the last 2 days I have spent at least a few hours–I think I’m up to 6 hrs–making my life easier.  Or at least so that is what I was telling myself. 

My Little Cookbook Project

I have this collection of random recipes from my mother, grandmother, father, online cookbooks, friend recipes, cards, and post-its of some of the greatest meals of my memories.  Then there are the cookbooks.  There were at least a dozen last time I moved that filled my book shelf.  And as much as I love just LOVE to dust things that never move (NOT), I was looking at some of these asking myself how long was I going to be toting around these MASSIVE paper weights?  Then the final logic behind this project TRI-FECA was the frustration I go through every time I want to look to create some thing DIFFERENT in the kitchen.  Or Heaven forbid I want to create something I have done before, but CAN’T SEEM TO FIND THE RECIPE ANYWHERE!?!?!??!?!

So the idea began to be crafted, dissected, and created.  Why not create one binder filled with ALL my recipes from EVERYWHERE, printed on card stock or put in those plastic cover thingys, and then put them into dividers in ONE GIANT (okay maybe 2) binders to be kept in my kitchen.  So there it was.  Convenience , consolidation, and creativity all in one.  What a great idea. RIGHT?

That is until I have started this project like 6 times only to arrive at an impasse, have to grown over technical difficulties, lack of resources, or finally a moment of perfectionistic dissatisfaction with my ability to cut straight or align things uncrookedly.  So yesterday in blissful ignorance I begin again.  I am actually quite proud of my efforts, until I look up and realize it is 12:50am and I should TOTALLY be asleep now.  Dang IT… why does the clock always bring me such bad news.  But after about an hour of packing things up and reorganizing my steps so I didn’t leave the living room a complete disaster; I find sleep. 

Today I begin again, cutting and sorting and copying and making a TEENY TINY bit of progress, only to reach a snag.  The ink looks like it is out in my printer.  Of course this is after I have taken at least 5 times to get the alignment correct between the hole punched paper and right side up on both sides.  So I do what any good printer owner does… I remove the ink cartridge and shake like CRAZY, please just a few more copies, PLEASE!!! I don’t have time to go to Office Supplies R us tonight OH and they are probably closed at 8pm on and SUNDAY.  Dang IT… AGAIN! 

So I try to figure out what to do next to make progress and I am now at a kind of loss as I do not think I can continue down this process when I realize there are FANCY settings on the printer itself, so I test and retest and move things from color to not color and realign the pages etc, etc.   Anyone feeling me yet?  This project seemed like such an easy task.  Such a great way to make my life EASIER, RIGHT?  Now I seem to be knee deep into chaos and technological frustration; all for what?  SO I better be testing some of these recipes out soon, because if I end up having to dust this THING once I’m done, I am seriously SERIOUSLY gonna christen my new BBQ Grill with a Bonfire. 

I mean WHO wants to be reminded of hours and hours of effort and work that results in a waste if not used.  Anyone else gotten a crazy idea that just seems to turn into a time sucking project that never ends?

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REPOST: Spiritual Mini-Meals

Some where between September and January… I have gone from regular slow incorporation of the regular mini meals to a completely starving myself like I have forgotten how to feed myself.  I am so thankful for books and people who speak and share what they read.  This last month at Horizon it seems that the Pastor took a play book straight out of the Divine Mentor book to remind me how important this is.  So even though I was digging through the archives looking for something COMPLETELY DIFFERENT, I found this and thought it would be a good reminder especially since God seems to be taking the time to TELL me about it AGAIN. 😀

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How much of my day each week is just a routine? Set alarm clock, brush teeth, drive to work, BUY STARBUCKS, work in my office (no LAUGHING), drive home, make dinner, work out (if I make myself), watch tv, and force myself to go to sleep. On Sundays, I visit with God in the morning at church during service which amounts to 1.5 hrs. And somewhere I believe that THIS is supposed to do the trick? It is supposed to provide me with all the spiritual fuel to change my life, tackle temptation, and share the gospel. I mean, I am a good Christian, I fed the meter, did my duty, got to church, sang the songs, took notes, and fellowshiped with friends, so now I get to sit in the peace and patience and pleasure of God’s grace because I showed up, right?

With this new food plan one of the principles is eating 6 small portion meals a day. We are not supposed to eat 2 gigantically HUMUNGOUS meals just to make the taste buds happy or satisfy the emotional hungry monster. This small injection of fuel every couple of hours is supposed to keep my metabolism up. It keeps the body moving and functioning as it is DESIGNED! So what if I take the teeny tiny little concept and apply it to my relationship with God. I am not supposed to get ONE big ENOURMOUS meal of God on Sunday morning and expect it to carry me through the entire week with no hunger pains or depression or want of more.

I need to see my time with God as taken in small doses. That those small meals or doses of fuel will give my spiritual body what it needs every couple of hours. Now does this mean I stop and read a WHOLE entire chapter of the Bible every 2 hours (I think the people at work might give me the funny eye)? Well I could, but for me I see this as being an opportunity for me to be creative with my relationship with God. After all who wants to put God in a box, he has a tendency not to FIT very well.

Whether it is saying a prayer for a friend I know struggling, asking myself if I have read my CHUNK of the word today, or flipping to a worship song on my iPod… just taking those simple edible morsels of spiritual food could really improve my spiritual metabolism.

I had a wonderful time one sunday morning in December when I felt inspired and reminded of the love God has for me. Yes me, myself, Christina, all for me. The forgiveness and forgetfulness that God ahs toward my past and my sin. There was something else said that reminded me of my NEEEEEED to get close to Him. I need him, I don’t just want to be liked by him or valued by him; but I genuinely honestly NEEEEED Him to function; NEED him to be who I am; and I NEED him to live this life.

With that in mind, I realize I need to incorporate Him into my routine. Whether it is incorporating him into singing while brushing my teeth or praying while sleeping (neither of those work very well by the way – yes I’ve tried); I need to look around at my routine and find the places to put my mini meals of spiritual food.

It’s SO cool to get my way

Well it was more that I got something I wanted because some days it actually starts life in a good direction when you get something you want.  Well it helps ME anyway. 🙂

I have been struggling this year to GET THINGS MOVING.  There has been a series of sick weeks, work travel, personal distractions, and emotional confusion.  So as excited as I usually get in January to start a new years resolution or list of goals, this year it just didn’t happen.  I was focused on the new things in my life, but then it almost seemed like my life came to a screeching halt, and I couldn’t get it going again.  Which reminds me… I am now just remembering I hate January, but that is for another days’ post. 

Then something kinda cool happened yesterday.  I got something I wanted.  Now this may sound a little selfish and slightly self absorbed, but that is the simplest way to put it.  I have been looking around for a recumbent indoor bicycle to assist with my exercise program.  I used one during my physical therapy of my knee last year and discovered I really, REALLY liked it; and it was EASY.  Yes I know, I’m one of those silly people who needs to be CONNED… I mean convinced that exercise is a good thing.  That I just need to accept it is a necessary part of overall health, but lets just say the psyche is coming along KICKING and SCREAMING to this one.  I like being at rest.  I like allowing my brain permission to relax and that only happens when the body is relaxed.  But again I am getting distracted with a topic for another day. Point being… I’ve been surfing and craigslisting on occasion for a recumbent bike.   

It may seem simple or it may seem lofty, but I have been looking since September.  With the fact that ALL exercise equipment seems to come with a NOT IN MY BUDGET price tag, and that’s for the cheap pieces, its been kinda frustrating.  So I have been doing a good job of telling myself NO, and just waiting until the RIGHT deal comes around, or I have SAVED UP ENOUGH TO PAY FOR IT.  (Some days I hate Dave Ramsey.)

Then there is the job side of the equation.  They have been threatening since September to put me on the road 3 weeks a month.  So if I’m not home with the piece of exercise equipment, when am I going to use it, right?  I mean why buy a piece of equipment when you can use a hotel gym for free, this seemed so logical.  I did the math in my head, a piece of equipment that would get used 2 times a month sure does NOT seem worth the return on investment.  So again another reason to not give in to my whims and desires to BUY and wait. 

This is the One!

So there I was yesterday posting my “have room for rent” craigslist posting for like the 4th time in the last 6 weeks.  When did my usual, searches: housing needed, medifast food for discount, and recumbent bike (AND recumbant bike), glad I am not the only one who can’t spell.  And there it was… a posting just 1 day before (you other craigslisters know why that’s important), seeming modern, compact, digital, well-built recumbent bike for a IN MY BUDGET price.  Not cheap, but in the range I was willing to spend.  So I made the usually inquiries about availability, when can I come see, and made a master plan on how to convince a friend of mine to help me. (Yes, I usually offer up gas money and/or food in hopes that will be enough; if not I promise to help them MOVE or unpack or some silliness like that.) So there I was with desire, money, and a PLAN.  Now I know God laughs when we make plans and 9 out of 10 times these grand schemes of mine usually break down on one or more of the different toothpicks that I have built the bridge of things must go JUST PERFECTLY for this to work plan. 

But alas, I am here to tell you, IT WORKED.  And the lovely piece of exercise equipment is sitting in my room in the perfect spot I wanted all set up and waiting for me to dive in.  There is just something about how excited and fulfilled I get when a plan comes together.  So as I sit here making my plans for the next big accomplishment, I am giddy and proud and thankful that this little goal was accomplished.  I guess a better title would have been, I love it when a plan comes together, but I think that’s a quote or something. 🙂

Now the plan to make it a working piece of equipment and not a clothing rack.  Since I didn’t buy it in January, does that mean I have a better chance of being successful?