Sunday, March 29, 2015

Monday Morning Motivation…."Sing in the lifeboats"

"Life is a shipwreck but we must not forget to sing in the lifeboats"
Voltaire
I did not appreciate the deep meaning behind Voltaire's quote until I went through a major life crisis.  In the beginning of my crisis I did not sing in the lifeboat. I wailed.  I sought escape, I spent each moment in dread, mourning and fear.  I gave my life to God as a child and then again as a teenager in a small church up the street from my home.  I lost sight of God in the early days of my current crisis but I still called out to him.  I prayed and studied the Psalms.  Each day I got a little stronger.  Am I ashamed of my reaction in the early days of this trial in my life?  No.  I am human and God knows that.  He has helped me grow through it and to even thrive.  
So how do I sing in the lifeboat.  I literally sing when I am listening to Christian music.  My soul sings when I spend time with my family.  My heart sings when I take time to look at the beauty of God's creation that surrounds us even in our pain. 




"What am I to do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will pray with my mind also; 










I will sing praise with my spirit, but I will sing with my mind also."










1 Corinthians 14:15 ESV












Happy Monday Everyone








Enjoy Your World








KathieyV:-)

Photo of the Day from The Telegraph. "Piggyback Riders"

Photos and quote below are from the Telegraph"A frog hitches a ride on the back of a snail.  The unusual antics were caught on camera by photographer Hendy Mp in the woods near his home in Sambas Indonesia"Picture by Hendy MP/Solent News

(Ok so I had to add another photo taken by the same photographer.  I wonder if it was the same snail.  Maybe he just enjoys helping others:-)





Get out and take some photos!
KathieyV:-)

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Kathieys' Recipe Review "Stone-ground Grits with Mushrooms and Shrimp from Taste of the South Magazine

I decided to try what I consider a challenging recipe from a magazine called Taste of The South.  I studied their recipe below.  The picture below is from their website (mine did not look near as nice, but it was yummy)
Stone-ground Grits with Mushrooms and Sautéed Shrimp

Yield: 8 to 10 servings

Grits
  1. 4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  2. 4 cups water
  3. 2 cups stone-ground grits
  4. 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  5. 1 cup whole milk, as needed
  6. 1⁄2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
  7. 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Mushrooms
  1. 1 1⁄2 tablespoons olive oil
  2. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  3. 1⁄4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  4. 12 ounces baby portobello mushrooms, sliced
  5. 1⁄4 cup dry white wine
  6. 2 teaspoons fresh thyme
  7. 3⁄4 cup canned artichoke hearts, drained and roughly chopped
  8. 1⁄2 cup sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained and roughly chopped
  9. 2 cups firmly packed fresh spinach
  10. 1⁄4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  11. 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  12. 1⁄4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  13. Sautéed Shrimp, to serve (recipe follows)
Instructions
  1. FIRST In a large Dutch oven, bring broth and 4 cups water to a gentle boil over medium-high heat. Slowly whisk in grits and salt; reduce heat to medium-low. Cook, whisking often, until grits are thick and creamy, approximately 45 minutes. (If grits become too thick, whisk in enough milk to achieve desired consistency.) Stir in cheese and butter. Reduce heat to low; cover, and keep warm.
  2. NEXT Heat olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and red pepper; cook until fragrant, approximately 30 seconds. Stir in mushrooms. Increase heat to medium-high. Cook, stirring often, until browned, 6 to 7 minutes. Add wine and thyme; simmer until liquid evaporates, approximately 2 minutes. Stir in artichoke hearts and tomatoes.
  3. LAST Stir mushroom mixture, spinach, and basil into grits; season with salt and black pepper. Serve with Sautéed Shrimp.
Sauteed Shrimp
Yield: 8 to 10 servings

Ingredients
  1. 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  2. 2 cloves garlic, minced and divided
  3. 2 pounds medium fresh shrimp (tails left on), peeled and deveined, divided
  4. 1⁄2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  5. 1⁄4 teaspoon ground black pepper, divided
Instructions
  1. FIRST In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Add half of garlic; cook until fragrant, approximately 30 seconds. Increase heat to medium-high. Add half of shrimp; cook, stirring occasionally, until pink, 3 to 4 minutes. Season with 1⁄4 teaspoon salt and 1⁄8 teaspoon pepper; set aside.
  2. LAST Repeat with remaining olive oil, garlic, shrimp, salt, and pepper. Serve over grits

My Results are pictured below….


I must say it was yummy.  I also must say it was not easy.  Many steps, lots to clean up.  I did enjoy making it though.  I may try it again if I am feeling energetic.
So what would I give it on my cooking scale? Probably an 8/10.  It was yummy:-)
Happy cooking everyone.
KathieyV:-)

Monday, March 23, 2015

Monday Morning Motivation..The Joy

(from Pinterest)
Sometimes we get caught up in our disappointments, in our emotional/physical pain, in the stress of daily life.  So caught up that we fail to take the time to actually do the things that once brought us joy.  If you are going through a major trauma in your life such as illness, death of a loved one, divorce, or what ever the case may be, it is hard to do the things that once brought joy.  All I can say is push yourself to do what you used to love and you will once again find joy in them.  Maybe not right away but keep trying and it will come.
When my husband first left me.  I sank deep into depression and despair.  Joy was the last thing I ever expected to experience.  I thought my life was over.  Wrong!!  It took some time and determination but here I am nearly two years later and I am finding joy.  I find joy in my family, my friendships, in music, in my faith, even in my work.  I love photography, blogging, writing, travel, movies,  Zumba, flowers, cooking, Brodie my dog, and the list goes on and on.
If you are struggling to find joy.  I suggest you push yourself to do something you used to love.  Reach out to your friends, lean hard on your faith.  It takes time but your joy will come…
"Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning."
Psalm 30:5b
Happy Monday Everyone!
KathieyV:-)

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Recipe Review…Ham and Brie Melts from Taste of Home

I saw this recipe in the Taste of Home Magazine and just had to give it a try….I am glad I did.  Here is their recipe….





Ham and Brie Melts Recipe

Ham and Brie Melts Recipe

Melty cheese, ham and apricot preserves offer a special change of pace from the classic grilled cheese. These quick, crispy sandwiches remind me of baked brie. —Bonnie Bahler, Ellington, Connecticut






TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 20 min.YIELD:4 servings

Ingredients

  • 8 slices multigrain bread
  • 1/4 cup apricot preserves, divided
  • 1/2 pound sliced deli ham
  • 1 round (8 ounces) Brie cheese, rind removed, sliced
  • 3 tablespoons butter, softened

Directions

  • 1. Spread four bread slices with half of the preserves. Layer with ham and cheese. Spread remaining bread with remaining preserves; place over cheese, preserves side down. Spread outsides of sandwiches with butter.
  • 2. In a large skillet, toast sandwiches over medium heat 2-3 minutes on each side or until golden brown and cheese is melted. Yield: 4 servings.

My Results…




Yummy.  I would have to give it a 9/10 on my sandwich scale.  
Try a new recipe.
Enjoy Your World
KathieyV:-)

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Caleb and Nana's Adventures…The Aloha Safari Zoo

Caleb and I love to go on adventures.  We decided one Saturday to take a ride to The Aloha Safari Zoo in Cameron NC.  It took us about an hour to get there but it was worth the trip.
Here is what they say about the zoo on their website…
Lee Crutchfield is on a mission to rescue animals in need. He currently holds a license for up to 500 animals, although Aloha Safari Zoo tops out at about 300. Lee works non stop to provide animals a refuge where they can peacefully live out the remainder of their lives. About 300 animals of various species, most exotic, have found a sanctuary in an educational zoo that Crutchfield, his family and a small team of dedicated individuals have labored to create. The zoo is over 60-acres and opened to the public January 2010.


 Caleb loved the tiger cub..






 We spent time at the playground and then had a nice picnic lunch.




We had a really nice time at the zoo.  I was talking with Caleb the other day and mentioned going on another adventure and guess what he said.  "Nana, lets go to the Aloha Zoo."  Sounds like a good idea to me Caleb.
Get out and go on an adventure
Enjoy Your World!
KathieyV:-)