Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Pork chops and applesauce

Not much time to blog tonight, but I have to share a recipe. We had these for dinner tonight, and they were scrumdiddlyumptious! Super easy, too. 

Mahogany Chops

4 top loin pork chops, 3/4-inch-thick
1/3 cup teriyaki sauce
2 tablespoons molasses

  1. Season chops with salt and pepper.
  2. Stir together teriyaki sauce and molasses in a small bowl.
  3. Place pork over medium-hot coals and grill for 8 to 10 minutes, basting with sauce in the last few minutes.
Serves 4.

Nutrition Facts: Calories 210 calories Protein 26 grams Fat 6 grams Sodium 1090 milligrams Cholesterol 60 milligrams

Please try them. And soon. I do sincerely apologize if you don't eat pork 'cause these are slap-yo-momma good. It's the other white meat. Not to be confused with baby, which is the other, other white meat. Cool it now. Just a harmless Austin Powers reference. I don't eat babies. That would be gross. 


Miss K

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

More of You, less of me

So, I've been in a general slump lately. Surprise, surprise. I think my husband and son are wondering if and when happy mommy/wife is going to come back or if they're stuck with this crabby old bag. 

I have seen the light at the end of the tunnel, folks, and it was such an easy answer I completely bypassed it. I've been moping around, feeling sorry for myself, and generally disregarding the world and everyone I care about in it. I'm actually ashamed to even share this, but the end result is worth sharing so I'll swallow my pride and share this lesson. 

I've been really wrapped up lately in feeling lonely and empty, mostly in the friend department. Wondering about relationships that have changed, wondering why certain relationships haven't developed, etc. It's been engrossing me and robbing me of the daily joy I should be living with my boy and my man. I feel like I've been beating a dead horse as I try to control the situation with all my might. When I finally decide to give up and let it all go, I get my answer. (Bear with me, this might be lengthy, but should be worthwhile.) 

I was driving home today after a somewhat tumultuous morning where I lost my patience with my dear boy umpteen times and was just ready for a break. As I was listening to the song "Our God," by Chris Tomlin, I heard the still-small voice of the Lord and it was breathtaking. As my mind wandered with uncertainty about friendship and closed doors, God said, "What about Me? What about our friendship? Why have you closed the door on Me?" 

My heart immediately sank and I approached tears. It's so easy. Right there. Black and white. I'm not where I need to be with the Lord. Sure, I pray. But how trite are those prayers at times, when I'm rushing to eat lunch or drifting off to sleep? I'm not in the Word daily. Cripes! I admitted it. This blog is supposed to be transparent for me, so there it is. I'm not talking to God, my friend, on a daily basis like I should. Taking questions to him, looking to him for guidance. I'm trying to tell God, "Hey, I got this. Go deal with someone who really needs it." Umm, hello? I need it. I need Him. You would think this would be second nature to me, having been a Christian for 15+ years now, but, apparently and sadly, it's not. 

All of my doing on my own has been undoing what God wants. I've been ignoring the main relationship in my life. Of course the others are going to falter. My primary responsibility is my relationship with God. It's in the JOY acronym. Jesus. Others. Yourself. So easy, yet so hard. I can't believe I didn't see it. I'm so ashamed.

Right after all of this, I heard the song "Take You Back" by Jeremy Camp. Wow! Could God have spoken to me any more strongly and convictingly? He said to me in that chorus: 

"I'll take you back always
Even when your fight is over now
I'll take you back always and
Even when the pain is coming through
I'll take you back."

Our God is a God of second, third, fourth, infinite chances. For that, I am ultimately grateful. How many people give us a second chance when we brutally rebuff them? Not many I can think of. I've been known to deny second chances, too. I'm so glad God doesn't do so. 

My focus now is to get my relationship back on track with God. No more trying to do it myself. It's been said that if God is your co-pilot, you're sitting in the wrong seat. I see that much more clearly now. It means taking your burdens to Him, your every burden. Even the ones that seem minuscule and inferior. Your hurts, your fears, your joys, your passions. Everything. 

This is my commitment from this day forward: to lay those burdens down and ask for His help. Let Him solve life's mysteries for me without unraveling myself in the process of trying to control everything in my grasp. He's already told me this in His word, in Matthew 11:28-30: "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."

Release control. Repeat: release control. It's SO hard to do as a woman. I feel every woman has this burden; it's in the nature of who we are. We are nurturers, caregivers; we want to make everything OK for everybody. We just can't do it. Listen to me, girls: we can't do it. We need the Lord. We need to be daily living Philippians 4:6-7: "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."

This is so powerful. I'm in awe of these verses. You mean I can be at peace about my questions, fears, and requests? Absolutely. I need only take them to God and let Him sort them out. I'm ready, willing, and able. Are you? 

God summed it up for me with this gentle reminder from John 3:30: "He must become greater; I must become less." So simple, yet so complex. I will seek to attain this goal, but only with God's help. 

I humbly thank you, Lord, for this lesson. May it be a light unto someone else's path as it has been to mine. 

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

What's in a name?

Howdy! Now that my non-committal self has decided not to abandon this blog altogether due to my exceedingly high expectations for myself, I feel it's time to settle in and get cozy. Pull up a chair, why don't ya, and I'll tell you how I came about the title for this here blog. 

I had a friend mention to me that she was reading my blog and she wondered why I chose bedbugs of all things. She said, "Don't you know those things hurt when they bite?" It made me chuckle, but it actually reinforced my reason for using bedbugs as part of the title. 

Butterflies and bedbugs are like a yin and yang to me (it's merely symbolic though and not religious in any way). Butterflies are one of my favorite things in life. I love their beauty, their fluidity, and the fact that they brighten up this amazing landscape we call Earth. Bedbugs are nasty, creepy, bloodsucking vermin. 

I believe that butterflies and bedbugs can be a metaphor for everything we encounter in life. Our butterflies will be special people, events (marriages, births, etc.), and all the pleasantries of life. Our bedbugs will be all the tragedies of life (death, disorder, financial crisis, etc.). Put these together and you have the story that is human life. 

As a Christian, it is very easy for me to praise the Lord through all the butterflies of my life. How can one not be thankful for a great marriage or the birth of a healthy baby? It's the bedbugs in life that are going to test me. It's being able to praise the Lord through the loss of loved ones, heartache, anger, and disappointment that is going to truly demonstrate my character. This is not easy, by any means, but it is my utmost desire. I strive to find joy in the beauty AND imperfection of life, for I know that trials await me. It is my hope to meet those trials head-on, armed with the Scriptures and the hope of Jesus Christ. I want to have John 16:33 playing on eternal repeat in my head: "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."

Thus, this is the meaning of my blog and my hope for all who read it as well. 

Monday, August 16, 2010

Time to put up or shut up

I'm doing precisely what I didn't want to do with this blog, and it's irking the fire out of me. I'm blogging sporadically, feeling guilty that I don't when I've made a commitment to myself, feeling like I need to be "inspired" in order to blog sincerely, and not blogging for fear of guilt over not being more productive. We sure can war with ourselves well, can't we? 

This is a simple concept. I started this blog so I could write. Nothing more, nothing less. If people want to read it and find something useful or not useful but just funny and absurd about it, then fantastic. But I really did it for me, as an outlet. A stream of consciousness, if you will. Unfortunately, my silly little mind that likes to wrap things up in neat packages with bows feels the necessity to put parameters on it. On my creativity. Why? 

The definition of "creativity" is quite the opposite. "Creativity" is the ability to transcend traditional ideas, rules, patterns, relationships, or the like, and to create meaningful new ideas, forms, methods, interpretations, etc.; originality, progressiveness, or imagination. 

It has to be my Type A-ness at work. So, I'm going to quash that Type A part of me that needs this blog to be a neat little package that I can completely understand and quantify, and just let loose. 

What does this mean? Per the title of this post, I decided it was time to put up or shut up with this blog. I've now realized that it's not. I would like to be more consistent and feel I will be in the coming weeks, as I'm working on several organizational things in my life to make me a more balanced individual (much more to come on organization and such later). 

I'm going to write when the mood strikes me and attempt to post every two to three days. Did I mention I'm non-committal? That's why I won't blog daily. ;) It's a wonder I ever got married with my fear of commitment, but that's a whole other blog post (or three). 

I'm not going to let my overthinking anal retentiveness suppress my creativity any longer. I'm freeing myself up to have fun on this journey and maybe learn a few things along the way, too. I do hope you'll join me. :)

Now go throw off the shackles of something you feel that's burdening you and enjoy the freedom! 

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Cue the lame-o

That would be me. I'm lame. I haven't blogged in over a week because I've been in the doldrums and having a little pity party for myself that I figured no one else would want to come to because it was for me. 

However, now, in the words of the immortal Frank Costanza: "I'm back, baaaabay!"