Monday, April 14, 2014

My Mom and Cooking

My mother didn't teach me to cook per say but I did learn a lot from watching her over the years, she was a very good cook.  I have been staying with my mother-in-law 2 days a week for over 7 years.  She was able to cook the things she enjoyed for herself until about 2 years ago.  I cooked some minute steak and gravy one day to take to her for lunch.  About a month later she ask me to cook some more minute steak for her because I knew how to fry it just right and I could make the gravy really good.  Well, I learned to fry things from watching my mother and she told me how to make gravy.  Sometimes my gravy is just right, sometimes too thin and them sometimes it is like they always said my granddaddy's was - you can cut it with a knife. My mother-in-law enjoys my cooking and I owe that to my mother and thank her for teaching me how to cook.

Last week my grandson spent the week with us.  He is such a blessing.  On Wednesday we went to the Caldwell Zoo.  On the way over there I was discussing how long it had been since I had been to the zoo with my friend who was with us.  It had been just a little over 7 years since I had been to the zoo.  The last time I had been was with my mother, my daughter Charity, Aundra and Austin in March of 2007.  After we had seen all the animals and were leaving the zoo at the exit there was a dime on the ground.  My friend picked it up and made the comment that my mother must have enjoyed our trip to the zoo. I don't know about that but we did enjoy our day and it did bring back a lot of memories of mom.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Missing Mother

Every day my mother is in my thoughts and prayers.  Last Wednesday during the night I dreamed of her and was thinking of her during my walk Thursday morning and trying to remember the dream.  Later that day I found two dimes and a penny.  I don't put as much stock in finding dimes as some do but every now and then I do think maybe they are from my mother.  There have been four occasions when I have found a dime then a penny when I have had something happen and I think afterwards - I should have headed mothers warning.  I usually do talk to mother when I find and dime and a penny in the same day and ask her what she wants me to be watching out for.  As I said Thursday was a day where my thoughts just continued to remember mother and special things about her and then I found the two dimes and penny and couldn't help but think they were from her.

Today, while driving to Tyler I heard this song for the first time on the enlighten radio station and couldn't help but cry and remember mother.  She still attended church and knew Jesus.  How sweet it is to remember, she knew Jesus and knew He was there for her.

She Still Remembers Jesus

Time has cast a shadow on her memory
And age has robbed her mind of dates and names
Seems the pieces of her past are lost forever
And the old home place just doesn’t seem the same
Faded pictures taped into the family albums
She tries in vain but can’t seem to recall
That the handsome man was once her loving husband
Who went Home to be with Jesus just last fall

But she still remembers Jesus and His amazing grace
He left a mark upon her heart that time cannot erase
She can tell you who He is and what He did and why He came
Yes she still remembers Jesus’ name

Still her children come most every day to see her
Behind their smiles they try to hide their pain
But at times it's hard to keep the tears from coming
When she asks her first born child, “Now what’s your name?”
Yet she knows every word to “Rock of Ages Cleft for Me”
You can feel His presence in the room when she quotes John 3:16
Though she was just a young girl when she first knelt down to pray
She remembers when she met Him like it was yesterday

Yes she still remembers Jesus and His amazing grace
He left a mark upon her heart that time cannot erase
She can tell you who He is and what He did and why He came
Yes she still remembers Jesus’ name

It’s a comfort to her family and it helps to ease their pain
That she stills remembers Jesus' name

Monday, July 8, 2013

Burned Biscuits - A lesson we all should learn

A friend shared this with me today and it was something I needed and I would like to share it with all of you.

When I was a kid, my Mom liked to make breakfast food for dinner every now and then. I remember one night in particular when she had made breakfast after a long, hard day at work. On that evening so long ago, my Mom placed a plate of eggs, sausage and extremely burned biscuits in front of my dad. I remember waiting to see if anyone noticed!

All my dad did was reach for his biscuit, smile at my Mom and ask me how my day was at school. I don't remember what I told him that night, but I do remember watching him smear butter and jelly on that ugly burned biscuit. He ate every bite of that thing... never made a face nor uttered a word about it!

When I got up from the table that evening, I remember hearing my Mom apologize to my dad for burning the biscuits. And I'll never forget what he said, "Honey, I love burned biscuits every now and then."

Later that night, I went to kiss Daddy good night and I asked him if he really liked his biscuits burned. He wrapped me in his arms and said, "Your Mom put in a hard day at work today and she's real tired. And besides, a little burned biscuit never hurt anyone!"

As I've grown older, I've thought about that many times. Life is full of imperfect things and imperfect people. I'm not the best at hardly anything, and I forget birthdays and anniversaries just like everyone else. But what I've learned over the years is that learning to accept each other's faults and choosing to celebrate each other’s differences is one of the most important keys to creating a healthy, growing, and lasting relationship.

And that's my prayer for you today... that you will learn to take the good, the bad, and the ugly parts of your life and lay them at the feet of God. Because in the end, He's the only One who will be able to give you a relationship where a burnt biscuit isn't a deal-breaker!

We could extend this to any relationship. In fact, understanding is the base of any relationship, be it a husband-wife or parent-child or friendship!

"Don't put the key to your happiness in someone else's pocket... keep it in your own."

So, please pass me a biscuit, and yes, the burned one will do just fine.
And PLEASE pass this along to someone who has enriched your life--I just did!
Be kinder than necessary because everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle.

"Would you please pass the jelly!!!"

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Alzheimer's Memory Walk

Shirley's granddaughter, Charity Vaughn, is raising money for the Alzheimer's Association.  To view her 2013 Walk to End Alzheimer's page click on the link below.  To make a donation click on the green tab on Charity's page that says "donate to my walk".  Thank you for your support.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

6 Years

Six years ago mom disappeared.  Everyday I think of her and where she could be.  It is only with the Lord's help that we continue on.

Yesterday I read a blog post from a young women about father's enjoying the ordinary days.  She stated that it was important to enjoy the ordinary days not just the special days because it is the ordinary days we remember the most when our loved one is gone.  That is so very true.  The things I remember most about my mother are not the holidays but the everyday things.

I would love to have one ordinary day with mother again.  Everyday I think of the ordinary things we use to do and wish she was here to do them with us again.  To see her in her kitchen cooking one of her delicious meals.  To play a game of aggravation with her, how many hours have been spent doing that ordinary thing?

Monday, Robert and I celebrated our 35th wedding anniversary.  Charity posted a picture of us on that day.  All I could think about was my wedding dress that was lovingly made by my mother.  I always enjoyed wearing clothes that were made by my mother.  She could make anything, something for a special occasion or something just for the ordinary day. 

Last week was spent with my grandson.  I took him to see dad twice and so wished that mother had been there.  She would love to see him, he is a very sweet boy.  It was not a special day, just an ordinary day spent with Zeke and my dad.  

We don't know how much time we have on this earth so lets enjoy the ordinary days, the brown paper bag days.  Take time to spend with those you love and make memories to be cherished later.  The young woman was truly right - it is the ordinary days that we cherish the most.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Honoring our parents

I have spent the last 3 weeks thinking so much about my mother and my dad.  The week before Christmas I keep my grandson and had a wonderful week with him. We went out to my parents home and all I could think about was how much my mother would have enjoyed spending time with Zeke.  He is truly a blessing in our lives.  The holidays were a wonderful time but it was as if a hole was in the day and it couldn't be filled because mother was not with us. Always the unspoken words hanging in the air, knowing how much she would enjoy the day.

In the days since Christmas I have been thinking about what it means to honor your parents.  Several times this has been brought to my attention.  I don't really know all that it means to honor our parents but I know that it means to take care of them, to be there for them and do what you can to make the way a little smoother and to help make the days not so lonely.  I know I have failed at this in many ways, mainly in making the way a little smoother and not giving the more hardship, but I know that with God's help I can continue to honor my mother and my father.

I found two articles online and thought I would share them.  One has to do with what the Bible says about caring for our elderly parents and the other is about what it means to honor our parents.  If you haven't done so please tell your parents that you love them, you never know when the last time will be.

"The Bible has much to say about caring for elderly parents and other family members who are not able to care for themselves. The early Christian church acted as the social services agency for other believers. They cared for the poor, the sick, the widows and the orphans who had no one else to care for them. Christians who had family members in need were expected to meet those needs. Unfortunately, caring for our parents in their old age is no longer an obligation that many of us are willing to accept.

The elderly can be seen as burdens rather than blessings. Sometimes we are quick to forget the sacrifices our parents made for us when they are in need of care themselves. Instead of taking them into our homes—whenever that is safe and feasible—we put them in retirement communities or nursing homes, sometimes against their will. We may not value the wisdom they have acquired through living long lives, and we can discredit their advice as “outdated.”

When we honor and care for our parents, we are serving God as well. The Bible says, “The church should care for any widow who has no one else to care for her. But if she has children or grandchildren, their first responsibility is to show godliness at home and repay their parents by taking care of them. This is something that pleases God very much....But those who won't care for their own relatives, especially those living in the same household, have denied what we believe. Such people are worse than unbelievers” (1 Timothy 5:3-48).

Not all elderly people need or want constant, live-in care in their children's homes. They may prefer to live in a community with other people their age, or they may be quite capable of complete independence. Regardless of the circumstances, we still have obligations to our parents. If they are in need of financial assistance, we should help them. If they are sick, we should take care of them. If they need a place to stay, we should offer our home. If they need help with household and/or yard work, we should step up to assist. And if they are under the care of a nursing facility, we need to assess the living conditions to make sure our parents are being properly and lovingly cared for.

We should never allow the cares of the world to overshadow the things that are most important—serving God through serving people, especially the people in our own families. The Bible says, "Honor your father and mother"—which is the first commandment with a promise—"that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth" (Ephesians 6:2-3)."

"Honoring your father and mother is being respectful in word and action and having an inward attitude of esteem for their position. The Greek word for honor means “to revere, prize, and value.” Honor is giving respect not only for merit but also for rank. For example, some Americans may disagree with the President’s decisions, but they should still respect his position as leader of their country. Similarly, children of all ages should honor their parents, regardless of whether or not their parents “deserve” honor.

God exhorts us to honor father and mother. He values honoring parents enough to include it in the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:12) and again in the New Testament: “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother which is the first commandment with a promise, so that it may be well with you, and that you may live long on the earth” (Ephesians 6:1-3). Honoring parents is the only command in Scripture that promises long life as a reward. Those who honor their parents are blessed (Jeremiah 35:18-19). In contrast, those with a “depraved mind” and those who exhibit ungodliness in the last days are characterized by disobedience to parents (Romans 1:302 Timothy 3:2).

Solomon, the wisest man, urged children to respect their parents (Proverbs 1:813:1;30:17). Although we may no longer be directly under their authority, we cannot outgrow God’s command to honor our parents. Even Jesus, God the Son, submitted Himself to both His earthly parents (Luke 2:51) and His heavenly Father (Matthew 26:39). Following Christ’s example, we should treat our parents the way we would reverentially approach our heavenly Father (Hebrews 12:9Malachi 1:6).

Obviously, we are commanded to honor our parents, but how? Honor them with both actions and attitudes (Mark 7:6). Honor their unspoken as well as spoken wishes. “A wise son heeds his father's instruction, but a mocker does not listen to rebuke” (Proverbs 13:1). In Matthew 15:3-9, Jesus reminded the Pharisees of the command of God to honor their father and mother. They were obeying the letter of the law, but they had added their own traditions that essentially overruled it. While they honored their parents in word, their actions proved their real motive. Honor is more than lip service. The word “honor” in this passage is a verb and, as such, demands a right action. 

We should seek to honor our parents in much the same way that we strive to bring glory to God—in our thoughts, words, and actions. For a young child, obeying parents goes hand in hand with honoring them. That includes listening, heeding, and submitting to their authority. After children mature, the obedience that they learned as children will serve them well in honoring other authorities such as government, police, and employers. 

While we are required to honor parents, that doesn’t include imitating ungodly ones (Ezekiel 20:18-19). If a parent ever instructs a child to do something that clearly contradicts God’s commands, that child must obey God rather than his/her parents (Acts 5:29).

Honor begets honor. God will not honor those who will not obey His command to honor their parents. If we desire to please God and be blessed, we should honor our parents. Honoring is not easy, is not always fun, and certainly is not possible in our own strength. But honor is a certain path to our purpose in life—glorifying God. “Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord” (Colossians 3:20)."

Saturday, November 24, 2012


Thanksgiving has come and gone with many happy memories and thoughts of Thanksgiving's past.  I have thought of my mother so much this week and how much she enjoyed the holidays.  The decorating and baking, she is one of the best cooks I know.  This year the holidays would have been so much fun for her to share it with her first great-grandchild.  I thought of her and wished she was here to share all the first things with us.

It was a holiday spent with many first for my grandson and us.  A time filled with happy memories.  I was glad they were here to help my dad make it through the holiday.  I can't count the blessings we have had this year but one thing I am so thankful for is my dad.  We have shared supper every night this week and to hear my dad pray is a blessing and makes me cry each time.  I will always cherish this time with him and just wish mother was here to share it with us.

Christmas is just around the corner and mother loved to decorate the tree and her house was always so pretty.  The last tree she decorated with my daughter Charity is still in the sun room decorated and covered with a sheet.  She enjoyed all things about Christmas - the baking, decorating and sending of cards to friends they had made through the years and to family.  I hope my children remember the Christmas' they shared with her and dad.

I hope we can all cherish the time we have to spend with family and friends over the holidays and everyday.