” Practice the Pause
-When in doubt, pause
-When angry, pause
-When tired, pause
-When stressed, pause
And whenever you pause pray”
I’m not sure who said that but I found it on Pinterest a while ago and thought how true. When we pause for even a second we think clearer, mistakes are less and hurt does not run rampant like a wild fire.
Little did I know how often I would think of it but I think and tell myself this daily. I have always been one to keep going until I finished a task. I didn’t need deadlines I gave them to myself. I always wanted to finish and brake some kind of record I would set for myself.
I enjoy “stopping to smell the roses” I even have proof.
Yes this is a very young me. The picture is old and worn but speaks volumes. As much as I love to stop and do this or to sit on a nice bench to take in this beautiful world I also become a dog with a bone when I have a task to do.
This started when I was a baby ( sorry mom )and continued until a short time ago when I was given no choice but to take a pause.
My body reminded me it is time to learn the beauty of the pause, for years I confused pause with stop but instead, if used as a noun it is only “a temporary stop in action” Yes this was a light bulb moment. I am choosing to have pause as a noun in my life. I am learning that there is such wonder and sweet moments in the pause. That I am not only physically healing but old emotional hurts are allowed to heal in the pause. Just as I love to stop and enjoy the pause when seeing others or to pause and appreciate this world. I am just as special to stop and pause for myself.
I know that embracing the practice of the of pause I must continue to do so for the rest of my life or I won’t have one. I must let my body heal and to continue to keep up with my practice of the pause in order to stay healthy.
I find it so amazing that if we don’t stop to acknowledge the things in our life we need to work on then things happen to give us a chance to learn and do better.
Lamentations 3:24-26 (ESV)
“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.” The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.
Just call me Popeye, I love all things spinach even from a young age. My mom never had to fight with me when it came to eating. I would get so excited when she would make Spinach Casserole, even now when I make this great easy dish I never can get it to taste as good as hers.
I had her write down the recipe but somehow mine is just not as good. My children think the same of mine so maybe its a mothers love that adds the extra goodness to it. Who knows, this recipe is a quick easy and good dish to try if you are one of those that love spinach even if it is cooked.
You can use a crock pot or oven. I used the oven because I broke my crock pot just the week before but was hungry for this and found it still taste great when baked in the oven.
As you can see this has few ingredients. I did not make as large of portion as my mom’s recipe states but that is because I was only making this for myself with thoughts of leftovers for my lunch or another dinner.
1 24oz Frozen bag of Spinach (unthaw and drain)
3 large Eggs
1 32oz low-fat small curd Cottage Cheese
2 Tablespoon of real Butter ( cubed)
1/4 Cup of cubed Cheese any flavor your like will be great
1/4 Cup of flour
Salt and Pepper to taste
I mix all ingredients in the buttered pan/crock pot that this casserole is baked in.
If using the oven to bake then use a 13×9 dish. Bake covered for 1 hour at 350. For a crock pot just butter the crockpot, mix ingredients and cook on low for 6-8 hours. This is very easy clean up and so good. I cut the recipe in half and used 2 small eggs but the full recipe will feed a family of four with some leftovers.
My enjoyment of the pancake started early on. I love them in every form with all sorts of toppings. This said I also like trying to make every kind out there. So the other week when I wanted a pancake but didn’t want to use an egg I thought I would try a substitute in them and this was the result. They were tasty and if you don’t go by looks they are a great pancake.
There are so many ways you can substitute an egg:
Ground Flax or Chia seeds ( one of my favorites)
The list can go on but the one that I have never tried until now was,
1 1/2 Tablespoon vegetable oil mixed with 1 1/2 Tablespoon water and 1 Teaspoon baking powder.
If you don’t have an egg or maybe you don’t eat them you may want to try this basic easy pancake recipe.
1 1/2 Cup Flour
1 1/2 Teaspoon of baking powder ( when substituting for an egg use 2 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder)
Pinch of Sea Salt
1 Tablespoon of Sugar
1 1/14 Cup of Almond or Soy Milk
1/4 Cup of oil (when substituting for the egg add 1 1/2 Tablespoon)
1 Tablespoon Vanilla extract
1 egg or a substitute
1 1/2 Tablespoon of water but only when using the egg substitute
In a bowl mix dry ingredients then add most ingredients stir together. I have found the better pancakes are the ones that are not over mixed. Pour desired amount onto hot pan or griddle. When pancake starts to bubble flip, finish cooking on other side. Place cooked pancake on plate top with your favorite toppings.
I can’t believe January is over and February is here already. For me January usually feels like two months in one. I long to start planting things and having longer days of warm sunshine. With the second month under way I was wondering if maybe this whole year would go by faster than others. I know we are still in the beginnings of the year and who knows what lays ahead.
Will it be good times or trials, perhaps a mixture of both but as the year progresses and we find out, I was reflecting on one of my favorite passages in the book of Isaiah.
Isaiah 43: 1&2
- But now, this is what the Lord says—
he who created you, Jacob,
he who formed you, Israel:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
- When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
In these two verses I find such comfort. Many ask if there is a God that loves us why does bad stuff happen? Great question but in these verses it gives some of the answer.
I noticed first it points out who is with us and how He feels about us and who we are. Then it says WHEN we go through hard times not IF, big difference. It means to me that yes hard times come, we live in a fallen world but because I have a God that loves me He calls me His own he will be with me every step of the way! How comforting to have my father with me in the hard times.
Just like when we have a loving parent, friend, partner who is with us so we can cry on their shoulder, we feel their love and can count on them to help us. With God its even better to cry on his shoulder knowing He will comfort us and give us strength to move on.
This year may be a breeze with no major problems or maybe it will seem it is nothing but hard times but I feel the comfort knowing that I have someone who will be with me always.
I needed to use up a block of my extra firm tofu and didn’t want to do much standing and staying in the kitchen kind of cooking. I also was hungry for something Italian. This might sound like a tall order especially when you need to go shopping but have been too busy. So I decide to make todays recipe. It is easy and my meat-eating son enjoyed it.
You can soak the tofu in a warm salt bath for 15 minutes if the tofu texture is a bit to much for you, this helps it to be less of a curd type texture.
If you don’t want to soak it I would recommend wrapping the block or sliced tofu in a towel and setting something heavy on it for about 10-15 minutes.
1 Block extra firm or firm tofu
Marinara sauce ( I made my own but store-bought works great too)
1 Small Potato
1 Bell Pepper
1 Small Carrot
1 Small Onion
4-5 Garlic cloves diced
Sea Salt and Black Pepper to taste
In a roasting pan or 9×9 square pan add a small amount of the marinara sauce, just enough to coat the bottom. Place drained tofu in the center. After cutting large bite sized portions of the potato, bell pepper, carrot, onion add them around the tofu sprinkle with salt, pepper and garlic. Pour the rest of marinara sauce over tofu and veggies. If you would like sprinkle grated cheese over the tofu.
Bake covered at 350 for 35-40 minutes then remove cover and check to see if veggies are tender. Keep the cover off bake for about 10 more minutes just to brown the cheese.
Remove from oven, slice tofu and serve over cooked pasta.
This severs about 2 people with larger appetites