Monday, July 26, 2010

Glimpses of Heaven


I have always been fascinated with true stories about hope and peace. There's something very intriguing and special listening to stories about loved ones who are ailing and still finding peace and comfort from God, even at the end of their life's journey. That is why I especially loved reading "Glimpses from Heaven", by Trudy Harris.

Trudy was a hospice nurse who has visited countless patients and witnessed their spiritual journey from life into death. The divine stories she shares from experiencing such beautiful moments is almost unexplainable but leaves you feeling honored to have shared such holiness through Trudy's experiences.

What an amazing blessing for Trudy to be a part of people's lives in such a way that few people can ever imagine; and what a blessing for Trudy's patients to have had such an extraordinary hospice nurse gently and lovingly care for them and their families at the most meaningful time in their life.

I hope you get a chance to read this beautiful book. It will quickly become very dear to your heart.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Low-Point Deviled Eggs

This effortless low-point deviled egg recipe allows you to completely enjoy family get-togethers without having to give up your favorite foods!

Low-Point Deviled Eggs
6 Large hard-boiled eggs, peeled
1/3 cup shredded low-fat cheddar cheese
1/4 cup fat-free mayonnaise
1/4 cup reduced-fat sour cream
3 Tbs. minced scallions or chopped chives (optional)
Cut eggs lengthwise in half. Remove yolks to small bowl. Reserve whites. In a bowl, mash yolks with a fork. Add cheese, mayonnaise, sour cream, and scallions; mix well. Spoon 1 heaping tablespoon yolk mixture into each egg white half. Refrigerate, covered. Sprinkle paprika on top to taste and for presentation.
Total servings = 12
Serving size = 1
Points per serving = 1 pt.
If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, just Click Here.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Low-Point Grilled Chicken Kabobs

After posting quite a few delicious low-point dessert recipes, I thought I would post a wonderful recipe that can be enjoyed as a meal for lunch or supper. It's incredibly tasty, healthy, and has very few points for no-guilt enjoyment! :)

Low-Point Grilled Chicken Kabobs
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
2 Tbs. spicy brown mustard
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts; each cut in half lengthwise, then crosswise in 1 1/4 inch-wide pieces.
1 each yellow squash and zucchini, halved lengthwise and then diagonally in 1/2 inch-wide pieces.
2 medium tomatoes cut and cubed (Romas work the best since they are very meaty inside and sturdier for the kabob skewer).
Whisk vinaigrette and mustard in a medium bowl until blended. Remove 2 Tbs. and set aside. Add chicken and vegetables and coat with the mixture. Thread the chicken and vegetables to skewer, leaving small spaces in between. Grill up to 15 minutes, turning once. Remove from grill and drizzle or brush with remaining 2 Tbs. dressing.
Serving size - 1 skewer
Total points per serving - 3 pts.
If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Foster Parenting - One of My Most Fulfilling Roles

There are several things I've done in life that have filled my heart and made "my cup runneth over". Marrying my best friend, giving birth to three wonderful children, meeting friends that have actually remained near and dear to my heart, and a few other accomplishments that have nothing to do with career choice. 

One thing that has also given me great joy was being a foster parent. My husband and I have been blessed to have loved and cared for six newborn babies, all whom have been adopted by wonderful loving couples who have been raising these children with great love. 

I will never forget driving to the hospital to pick up our first foster baby. At that time, I was able to enter the nursery and introduce myself to this precious little miracle. Driving home with this bundle of joy, I talked to her about our family, promised to love and nurture her as long as she was in our care; and we always ended our little conversation by offering up a prayer for the birth mother. 

More often than not, upon realizing these children were foster babies, strangers would begin to ridicule the birth mother for having given up their baby. I always enjoyed the opportunity to challenge their thinking, to change their heart. How difficult a decision it must have been to make. To love someone so much that you are willing to give them the gift of life, then to give them up and allow them a chance to have more of a life than what you would have been able to provide. To give a couple who has yearned for years for a child of their own, the chance to experience the true blessing of parenthood and family.

Looking at the pictures of our foster babies that grace our shelves, I always cherish the blessings that our family received from caring for each one of them. Thinking of them always fills my heart with love and makes "my cup runneth over".

Monday, July 5, 2010

Gardening - My Stress Relief, My Therapy

I love my garden! All of my beautiful flowers, tomatoes and squash. I told my husband the other day that I love gardening and he said, "But you hate weeding." This is true... so maybe that doesn't qualify me as gardener, but I do love my garden. It's therapeutic for me to be outside watering my plants and seeing how well (or not so well) my flowers and vegetables are doing. 
A lot of times when I'm stressed or need some time alone in my thoughts, I will go outside, walk around my yard, and water some plants. 
My husband has suggested I bring the kids out with me to help water, and is surprised by me wanting to do it alone. To me, having the kids help would defeat the purpose of my therapeutic time and may just end up causing more stress. Ha! However, come to think of it, I might send them out to weed while I observe through the window with a glass of ice tea. :)