Sunday, April 19, 2015

Essential Oils, Very 101...

Okay, I have been holding out. I heard about essential oils when we lived in Rhode Island and explored it, a little. Fast forward to the social media age. Between Facebook and Instagram, my interest was peaked yet again by reading posts, looking @ pics by friends, digesting the possibilities. I called Christina Adam, whose husband, Tim, I met through Esty @ the very beginning of this blog, in 2008. Christina initially put her toe in the water to see if she could find a natural way to help her 4 year old son sleep. She would tell you  how her life, and the lives of her young Family have changed since using the oils. I had not yet jumped on the bandwagon. It was around Christmas time, and I decided that it was time to invest in the starter kit from Young Living.

Very excited w/ my decision. The starter kit,  which included 11 oils, some samples and then some, came right before Christmas. Included w/ the purchase is a diffuser, which I immediately put to use by celebrating the season w/ Frankincense. Like many first-timers, I totally over estimated the strength of the oils by putting in waaaaayyyyy too many drops, say 6 instead of 2, and The Boys were choking. The learning curve, and it is a mighty steep one, was just beginning. Here it is, close to 4 months later, and I feel like I can share. The pics are oils, some, actually most, which I use daily!!! 

Here is a small breakdown:
Joy: 1 drop over my heart upon waking!
Di-Gize and Peppermint: 3 drops of Di-Gize, 3 drops of Peppermint in a gel tab, w/ some olive oil, I ingest
2X a day, morning and evening. Aids digestion and calms the stomach. You All know how well peppermint tea works. Seriously, 1 drop in hot water, and bingo!
Thieves: 2 drops on my toothbrush, 2X a day.
Valor: for courage AND TMJ, as needed!
Lemon: 3 drops 2X daily in my water intake. I also use 6 drops of lemon to my pasta dough to give a nice bright flavor!
Lavender: to help SLEEP, on my feet, temples and behind my ears...this is heavenly.
Peace & Calming: also @ night, on my feet and the back of my neck.
Stress Away: I use a couple of drops on my wrists and behind my ears after showering.
Thieves Household Cleaner: 3 caps to 1 large spray bottle, and as Christina said to me, your house will sparkle and smell like Christmas. It works really well on my counters and wood floors, and yes, the house has a subtle scent of pine!

One of my favorite stories is about Thieves. Thieves essential oil blend was inspired by the legend of four 15th-century French thieves who formulated a special aromatic combination composed of clove, rosemary, and other botanicals they used while robbing the dead and dying.This blend prevented them from getting sick. I have to tell you, just yesterday, I had a sore throat. I knew I was getting a cold. In a gel tab, I used 2 drops of Thieves, 2 drops of Lemon, 1 drop of Oregano (very strong), and olive oil. I took that combo 2X yesterday. It is as if my cold was on fast forward to 'the end' today. I took one more of that same blend this morning. Sore throat is gone, w/ use of the diffuser, Thieves on my feet and spine, I slept like a baby and today, I just have been blowing my nose. I did, of course pull out some chicken soup from the freezer!

Needless to say, I smell very good all of the time.  Essential oils and aromatic plants have been present and working since Adam and Eve lived in The Garden of Eden and are mentioned over 600 times in the Bible! I use the oils to support my health. Operative word being, support. As I mentioned, the learning curve, along w/ the depth and breadth of the oils is a mighty steep one. This really is Essential Oils, very 101.

'Moreover, the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “Take also for yourself the finest of spices: of flowing myrrh five hundred shekels, and of fragrant cinnamon half as much, two hundred and fifty, and of fragrant cane two hundred and fifty, and of cassia five hundred, according to the shekel of the sanctuary, and of olive oil a hin. “You shall make of these a holy anointing oil, a perfume mixture, the work of a perfumer; it shall be a holy anointing oil.'                                          Exodus 30:22-25

 'Mary then took a pound of very costly perfume of pure spikenard, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped His feet with her hair; and the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.'
                                    John 12:3

                                           

Thursday, April 16, 2015

International Holocaust Remembrance Day

Thursday marks International Holocaust Remembrance Day, which honors the 11 million people, the 6 million Jews killed during the 20th-century Nazi genocide. Holocaust Day, or in Hebrew "Yom HaShoah," runs from Wednesday night to Thursday night in many countries. This year's observance comes about three months after the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the concentration camp Auschwitz. In Israel, a siren will sound for 2 minutes throughout the entire country to mark the day of remembrance. For those two minutes, cars will stop, people will pause their conversations and work, and the world will stand still for a moment in remembrance of the 6 million Jews who were murdered in the Holocaust. We were in Israel, April, 1990, near the Knesset, Israel's Parliament building. Everyone and  everything, except time, stopped for those 2 minutes, you could hear a pin drop, if not for the sirens going off. 

NEVER AGAIN!!!

'Keep not thou silence, O God: hold not thy peace, and be not still, O God.
 For, lo, thine enemies make a tumult: and they that hate thee have lifted up the head.
 They have taken crafty counsel against thy people, and consulted against thy hidden ones.
4They have said, Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance.
 For they have consulted together with one consent: they are confederate against thee...'
                                                                          Psalm 83:1-5

Friday, April 3, 2015

Passover and Good Friday!!

Exodus 12

'And the Lord spake unto Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt saying,
 This month shall be unto you the beginning of months: it shall be the first month of the year to you.Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth day of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house:And if the household be too little for the lamb, let him and his neighbour next unto his house take it according to the number of the souls; every man according to his eating shall make your count for the lamb.Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats:And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening.And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it.And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it.Eat not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roast with fire; his head with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof.10 And ye shall let nothing of it remain until the morning; and that which remaineth of it until the morning ye shall burn with fire.11 And thus shall ye eat it; with your loins girded, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and ye shall eat it in haste: it is the Lord's passover.12 For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the Lord.13 And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt.14 And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the Lord throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever.15 Seven days shall ye eat unleavened bread; even the first day ye shall put away leaven out of your houses: for whosoever eateth leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that soul shall be cut off from Israel.16 And in the first day there shall be an holy convocation, and in the seventh day there shall be an holy convocation to you; no manner of work shall be done in them, save that which every man must eat, that only may be done of you.17 And ye shall observe the feast of unleavened bread; for in this selfsame day have I brought your armies out of the land of Egypt: therefore shall ye observe this day in your generations by an ordinance for ever.18 In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at even, ye shall eat unleavened bread, until the one and twentieth day of the month at even.19 Seven days shall there be no leaven found in your houses: for whosoever eateth that which is leavened, even that soul shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel, whether he be a stranger, or born in the land.20 Ye shall eat nothing leavened; in all your habitations shall ye eat unleavened bread.21 Then Moses called for all the elders of Israel, and said unto them, Draw out and take you a lamb according to your families, and kill the passover.22 And ye shall take a bunch of hyssop, and dip it in the blood that is in the bason, and strike the lintel and the two side posts with the blood that is in the bason; and none of you shall go out at the door of his house until the morning.23 For the Lord will pass through to smite the Egyptians; and when he seeth the blood upon the lintel, and on the two side posts, the Lord will pass over the door, and will not suffer the destroyer to come in unto your houses to smite you.24 And ye shall observe this thing for an ordinance to thee and to thy sons for ever.25 And it shall come to pass, when ye be come to the land which the Lord will give you, according as he hath promised, that ye shall keep this service.26 And it shall come to pass, when your children shall say unto you, What mean ye by this service?27 That ye shall say, It is the sacrifice of the Lord's passover, who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when he smote the Egyptians, and delivered our houses. And the people bowed the head and worshipped.28 And the children of Israel went away, and did as the Lord had commanded Moses and Aaron, so did they. 29 And it came to pass, that at midnight the Lord smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sat on his throne unto the firstborn of the captive that was in the dungeon; and all the firstborn of cattle.30 And Pharaoh rose up in the night, he, and all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt; for there was not a house where there was not one dead.31 And he called for Moses and Aaron by night, and said, Rise up, and get you forth from among my people, both ye and the children of Israel; and go, serve the Lord, as ye have said.32 Also take your flocks and your herds, as ye have said, and be gone; and bless me also.33 And the Egyptians were urgent upon the people, that they might send them out of the land in haste; for they said, We be all dead men.34 And the people took their dough before it was leavened, their kneadingtroughs being bound up in their clothes upon their shoulders.35 And the children of Israel did according to the word of Moses; and they borrowed of the Egyptians jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment:36 And the Lord gave the people favour in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they lent unto them such things as they required. And they spoiled the Egyptians.37 And the children of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, about six hundred thousand on foot that were men, beside children.38 And a mixed multitude went up also with them; and flocks, and herds, even very much cattle.39 And they baked unleavened cakes of the dough which they brought forth out of Egypt, for it was not leavened; because they were thrust out of Egypt, and could not tarry, neither had they prepared for themselves any victual.40 Now the sojourning of the children of Israel, who dwelt in Egypt, was four hundred and thirty years.41 And it came to pass at the end of the four hundred and thirty years, even the selfsame day it came to pass, that all the hosts of the Lord went out from the land of Egypt.42 It is a night to be much observed unto the Lord for bringing them out from the land of Egypt: this is that night of the Lord to be observed of all the children of Israel in their generations.43 And the Lord said unto Moses and Aaron, This is the ordinance of the passover: There shall no stranger eat thereof:44 But every man's servant that is bought for money, when thou hast circumcised him, then shall he eat thereof.45 A foreigner and an hired servant shall not eat thereof.46 In one house shall it be eaten; thou shalt not carry forth ought of the flesh abroad out of the house; neither shall ye break a bone thereof.47 All the congregation of Israel shall keep it.48 And when a stranger shall sojourn with thee, and will keep the passover to the Lord, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come near and keep it; and he shall be as one that is born in the land: for no uncircumcised person shall eat thereof.49 One law shall be to him that is homeborn, and unto the stranger that sojourneth among you.50 Thus did all the children of Israel; as the Lord commanded Moses and Aaron, so did they.51 And it came to pass the selfsame day, that the Lord did bring the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt by their armies.'

As a Family, we celebrate tonight the deliverance of the Jewish people out of the hand of the grasp of the terrible one, as has been done from generation to generation. We acknowledge that this night is also Good Friday. This is the night that Jesus was crucified, the most precious Lamb of God. It is a rare occurrence that Passover and Good Friday 'land' on the same night. In our household of Jews and Christians, it is deeply meaningful and significant day!












Monday, March 30, 2015

So I Bought This Pasta Maker...

It is compact, about the size of  toaster, sort of, but heavy, and made in Italy. It was on sale @ Williams-Sonoma and it was screaming my name. I had a good chat w/ one of the Gals @ the store about how to use it, what flour, etc. She suggested using Semolina flour. Semolina is derived from the Italian word semola, meaning bran.This is derived from the ancient Latin simila, meaning flour, itself a borrowing from Greek σεμίδαλις (semidalis), groats, or as we know them, grits. Semolina flour has more bite, I love the yellow color, and I knew I wanted to try it out. So, maybe using a new dough and a new pasta maker @ the same time was not the brightest idea. The photo shows how perfect the angel hair pasta is cut, how lovely and shiny the dough. What you do not see in the pic is the pasta all over the floor, the white flour and the semolina flour everywhere!!! The dough rolled out so thin and much much longer than I had anticipated. My order of 'things' was well, out of order and I made a gi-normous mess. Some of the thin, perfectly cut pasta stuck together because I did not use enough of either the regular or the semolina flour to keep the strands from sticking, and I had to throw some away because of the clumping. It was one of those moments, where I looked around, and had to laugh at myself, thinking this was straight out of a 'Lucy and Ethel' escapade. The good news is that the pasta, which survived, took all of 30 seconds to cook and was good. It was very good, and the pasta maker worked like a charm!! So, next time, I am going to use a combination of white and semolina flours from a recipe I found, and I will better prepared, armed w/ parchment paper to lay out the pasta in layers rather than nesting. This is not earth shattering by any stretch, stretch being the operative word, but, it's fun, and there is food to be had @ the end of the process!!!     

'She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.'
                                                               Proverbs 31:27

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

It Came, and Then, It Went...


Right after the white out..
..and more..
The tiny buds coated... 
...and it stopped, just like that...
Just like that, the snow blew in, to white out conditions, and then, blew out...just like that. We need the moisture, as we know what can happen when the land is parched. This will all be melted by tomorrow...it was really quite pretty!

'She is not afraid of the snow for her household, for all her household are clothed with scarlet..'
                                                                               Proverbs 31:21

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Columbine Angel...

When we lived in Rhode Island, a friend gave me some plants from her vast garden to replant in the front of our home. One of these plants was a Columbine. The flowers are so delicate, as you can see from this pic I took on a late summer afternoon in 2008. I did not know, at the time, that Columbine is the state flower for Colorado. Isn't that something?? Discovered in 1820 on Pike's Peak by mountain climber Edwin James, the Rocky Mountain Columbine (Columbine Aquilegia caerulea) is a lovely flower with a rich aroma to attract bees, hummingbirds and butterflies to it's nectar. The Latin word aquila means "Eagle" and refers to the claw-like spurs at the base of the flower. Columbines bloom in pastel shades of blue, violet, red, yellow and white. Looking back, we were always given a clue, if you will, about where we might wind up. God always had/has something up His sleeve. When the Columbine massacre took place in 1999, Edward was in 4th grade and we were living in Mt. Vernon, NY. I so clearly remember the fear and  horror unleashed that day. Every parent holding their babies, no matter how big or small, just that much closer. How do you explain this darkness to a 9 or 10 year old? Anywho, fast forward to 2012, and lo and behold, this beautiful, delicate angel of a flower is now my state flower. The plant stayed in Rhode Island, hopefully gracing the new owners w/ its presence come Spring. 

In a gazillion years, I never, ever imagined that I would set foot in Columbine or Littleton. (Littleton became widely known when the Columbine massacre occurred at nearby Columbine High School. News media reported that the incident happened in the city, because the school’s ZIP code is primarily associated with Littleton.) As it turns out, the woman I am seeing for grief counseling has one of her offices in Littleton. This is where we meet. A couple of weeks ago, we had some errands to run, and were running a bit early. Upon asking 'Siri' for information, we went to the nearby city of Columbine. Again, so far from anything I could have imagined. Once the errands were complete, we drove around Columbine. It is beautiful, w/ the Rockies and foothills so close, the rolling hills, the big Colorado homes, the open spaces. We were silent as we took it all in. When I saw my counselor, I told her about what had just transpired. She then shared w/ me that she counseled some of the 'Columbine parents'. I just shook my head @ the unfathomable grief these parents must have been going through. But, I have this, the angel-like Columbine flower to remind me always of the true meaning of Columbine.

Out of the ground the LORD God caused to grow every tree that is pleasing to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. - See more at: http://bible.knowing-jesus.com/topics/Knowledge-Of-Good-And-Evil#sthash.1NzyD1U8.dpuf
  'The LORD God planted a garden toward the east, in Eden; and there He placed the man whom He had formed. Out of the ground the LORD God caused to grow every tree that is pleasing to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.'
                                                                                                 Genesis 2:8-9 
Out of the ground the LORD God caused to grow every tree that is pleasing to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. - See more at: http://bible.knowing-jesus.com/topics/Knowledge-Of-Good-And-Evil#sthash.1NzyD1U8.dpuf

Out of the ground the LORD God caused to grow every tree that is pleasing to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. - See more at: http://bible.knowing-jesus.com/topics/Knowledge-Of-Good-And-Evil#sthash.1NzyD1U8.dpufThe LORD God planted a garden toward the east, in Eden; and there He placed the man whom He had formed. 9Out of the ground the LORD God caused to grow every tree that is pleasing to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
Out of the ground the LORD God caused to grow every tree that is pleasing to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. - See more at: http://bible.knowing-jesus.com/topics/Knowledge-Of-Good-And-Evil#sthash.1NzyD1U8.dpuf
Post script: Even tough I am seeing a grief counselor, does not mean I am walking around sad and grieving. That's is not who I am. But, it does mean that I am doing the work involved to release the grief...

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

The Arabian Horse and The Eagle...

We were told that they were near, and that sometimes, you might catch a glimpse of one in Cherry Creek State Park. No, it is not the coyote. However, it does apply to the Arabian horses and the eagles. There is a lovely, large piece of property down the road a piece, w/ what looks like a riding arena, a huge structure and 3 beautiful homes which are all part of the 'ranch, if you will. We had the ear of one of our neighbors, and asked about that property, what is it, we wanted to know. Turns out, the owner of a famous restaurant chain owns the property along w/, of all things,  Arabian horses. We were also told that sometimes, they will take the horses out in the park along the riding/walking paths. Well, lo and behold, just like w/ the coyote I saw for the first time last week, no one had to tell me that this was one of the Arabian horses!!! I just knew. It was regal, and its head was elongated. I love walking on the dirt paths in the park (vs. the concrete), there are more hills, and I love the feel of the earth under my flip flops. The horse and rider literally appeared before me as they were coming up the trail! Ohmygoodness! I pulled out my camera, asked if I could take some pics, and the rider, w/out stopping, said, yes, of course! I had prayed to see and to photograph these horses, so, here I was, almost face to face w/ this most special and beautiful  horse. Would I love to somehow, get into that arena to take allot of pics of these gorgeous creatures? But of course. In the meantime, an answer to prayer. And the eagles, well, we were told that they were near, and that you might catch a glimpse of one, 2 or 3 in the park. Jimmy spotted him/her first. I gingerly got out of the car, and gingerly walked over to the tree w/ the perched eagle, seriously hoping he/she would not look @ me and think, 'lunch'!! A golden moment capturing this shot. (All leading me to wanting to upgrade my camera, yet again!) We know where the nest is now, so, we will go back again and again. So, YAY to Arabian horses, eagles and yes, even the coyotes!!

'The horse is made ready for the day of battle, but the victory belongs to the Lord.' 
                                                                                                 Proverbs 21:31

'But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.'
                                                                                             Isaiah 40:31

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Holy Coyote!!

It may not seem like a big deal, seeing a coyote. But, I have never seen one before, let alone waking up to the howling of one and then being able to take a couple of pics. We know they are out there, we hear them @ night. They so easily disappear into the foliage, even w/ the bare branches from the bushes and trees. Looking @ the pics, I see what is probably a hawk in the second pic, waiting to see what the coyote was up to...survival of the fittest!!

'Be alert, be present. I’m about to do something brand-new.
    It’s bursting out! Don’t you see it?
There it is! I’m making a road through the desert,
    rivers in the badlands.
Wild animals will say ‘Thank you!’
    —the coyotes and the buzzards—'
                                                                     Isaiah 43:19-20