Sunday, March 30, 2014

Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner... well, more like Chili Dinner...

Last night was the Annual Chili Cook-off & Dessert Contest at Christ Church.  I entered my chili recipe, doctored up with some new things, and added moose meat as well as beef hamburger meat to it.

My Dad always was one of the winners, and he always used moose meat in his chili... guess it really works!

I won 1st place, in Dad's memory!!  Thanks Dad!

Other winners are shown here too... 1st Place Chili - me, 1st Place Desserts - Susanne, 2nd Place Chili - Ann, and 2nd Place Desserts - Pat.

The guests who came were the judges for the event, and each taste-tested the different chili and desserts.

Thanks to all who entered the contests; Roberta, Susanne, Pat, Ron, Ed, Carol, Ann, Jean, Pat and Bobbie.

And thanks to all who came to eat and judge too!  Fun Night!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Chili Cook-Off Preparations... Moose Chili, in honor of Dad...

Dad always entered the Chili Cook-off at Church.  He usually made his famous Moose Chili.  So, since John had some moose hamburger in the freezer, I decided to try and honor Dad by making some Moose Chili for the upcoming cook-off this Saturday.   Looks and tastes pretty yummy!  We'll see how it rates compared to other entries on Saturday.... Dad would probably tell me it needs to be more spicey, and less beans..LOL!

One Year Anniversary of Dad's Death...

Hard to believe it's already been a year since Dad died.  Time seems to have stood still at times, but then, it also seems like FOREVER since Dad died as well.   We ALL miss him terribly!  Often cry, as does Mom, and the rest of the family.  So much has changed in just a year too... we know Dad would be proud with how we are all taking good care of Mom, and we have much to be thankful for in having had such a loving and Godly Dad in our lives for so long.

Tonight I am spending the night with Mom, making dinner, and a sleep over, a time to remember Dad, maybe cry some with Mom, and rejoice that we know we WILL see Dad again when we are all reunited with Christ, and all those we love, in heaven.

 Until then, I miss you Dad, and I love you!!  Thank you Lord, for giving us our Dad!! xoxox

Wednesday, March 26, 2014


Kid's Pizza & Bowling with
The Prather's.
Over the last 15 months, our Church has been in the search process to find a new priest.

We have been praying, a LOT!  Discerning, and doing interviews via phone, and some in person with candidates we have been given.

We wondered if we'd EVER find a new Rector... and we didn't want to just "settle" for someone because it had been a long while.  So, we prayed even more, and waited.  

Jude, Fr. Joel & Tammy
with "flat Jesus"
THEN, we were given a resume of a priest, who was from N. IL originally, but now in a parish in Texas that he and his wife helped start.  Sounded interesting, and so we began the process... an email, phone calls, and a phone interview with the Search Committee, then some of our Committee went to visit him in his parish in TX, and after hearing about that, discussions with the Search Committee and the Vestry, and more prayer, we decided to ask the family to come to Delavan to see our Church, meet the people and hope and pray for a match that would bless all of us... and it DID!!  It was a really busy, but blessed weekend with the Prather family.  Such wonderful people, with a heart for God, and wonderful spiritual gifts that will surely bless us all, and I think we also have a lot to share in the ministry as well, and hope to be a blessing to them as well!

Senior Warden Pat and myself, excited
that Fr Joel accepted the invitation
to be our priest.  Here he is signing
the agreement covenants.
Ministry Leaders Dinner on Sunday night
A celebration of our mutual agreements,
excited to have Fr. Joel, Tammy & Jude at
Christ Church!
It is very exciting to be nearing the end of this search process  -  this is the 3rd search I've been involved with, on committees, and Fr. Joel will be the 5th priest I've served with at Christ Church.  We are ALL so looking forward to the mutual ministry we will share...disciples making disciples!


Looking forward to the time when the Prather's will be here... (maybe 2 months or so), and praying for their current parish... has to be a bittersweet time for them all as well.   Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayers!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Art as Prayer Show - A Visual Message From God 2014

Kasey Karstetter Art
Installation Assemblage by
Roberta, Patron Saint of Disabled

Beth Holden, Framed Photography
Celestial Cross of St. Peter at Sunset.

John Kowalczyk, Jesus with Feathers
& Lillies Painting

Christ Episcopal Church, Delavan, hosted the Art as Prayer Show & Meditations, March 12th -16th.  12+ Artists, some with several art pieces, and meditations offered their art as a way to show a visual message from God.  Here are some of the artists and their art.    The art was stationed in the new Narthex, the Church Nave, the Library, Christ the King Room, and Chapel.
Lindsay Holden Neighbors with
Wheat and Hare, Graphite on rust
dyed linen.
Artist John Jeninga shares about his photo
book, Liberation Songs
Roberta with Jewel of Great Price
& Blind Faith Assemblages.
Kasey and her painting.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Happy Birthday John!

Happy 62nd Birthday John!!   Had a nice birthday celebration with some of the kids and grandkids tonight.  Carry-out fish fry from his favorite fish fry place (The Village Supper Club), and appetizers here before hand too.

Fun time playing games with the grandsons, followed by birthday cake and ice cream too!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Neighborhood Turkey Thinks He's A Lawn Ornament

So, I came home from work today, and the neighborhood turkey was at the foot of our front door steps.  I saw that he turned to look at me when I pulled in the driveway, but then suddenly turned away and stood very still... I think he was thinking, as I was walking up to the door, that if he stood REAL still that I wouldn't see him...*L*!!  Goofy turkey, he thinks he is a lawn ornament now!   Ha!!

Friday, January 10, 2014

"Read, Mark, Learn & Inwardly Digest" photo featured at The Episcopal Cafe Art Blog

Episcopal Cafe Art Blog  is featuring a photo that I entered in a recent online exhibition at Episcopal Church and Visual Arts, Advent 2013, a Photographic Journey.   I'm honored to have it featured at both sites.  Thank you!!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Christmas 2013 * Thankful for Family and so much MORE!

We had such wonderful family gatherings this year. Many gatherings held at our house... our kids and grandkids were all able to be here on the Sunday before Christmas, and my husband's side of the family (about 25 or so) were at our house this year on Christmas Eve, and then we hosted my side of the family's Christmas gathering (about 60+) the Saturday after Christmas. I am so thankful for all sides of our family, and thankful for gathering in celebration of Jesus' birth, yet missing those who could not be with us as well.

Friday, December 20, 2013

ECVA Latest Online Exhibition, "Advent 2013: a photographic journey"

ECVA's Latest Online Exhibition, Advent 2013 recently posted the latest entries that were chosen for this online exhibit.   I had entered three photos, and am honored that all three were chosen.  I am especially thankful for featuring the photo I entered of my Dad's Last Christmas in This Life, showing my Dad on Christmas Day, as an acolyte near the altar.   It means a lot to me and to my Mom too, that it was one of the photos chosen in this exhibit.  Check out all the other wonderful entries in it too at the link!  Thanks ECVA!!Dad's Last Christmas in This Life

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Lack of Blog Posts....

So, as anyone can see... I have not posted on my blog for months and months.

I guess the death of my Dad has a lot to do with that. I miss Dad soooo much, as do my sisters and brother, all the spouses and relatives as well. My immediate family is very large... I've lost count even... but there are over 75 of us (sisters, brother, spouses, our kids, grandkids, my sibblings kids, spouses and grandkids too) ...

Anyway ... we've all been busy being with Mom, taking care of her, spending overnights, and doing family things ... time gets away from us often.

It's easier to post things on Facebook too, so many of my photos and things are there instead of here.

But, I am hoping I can maybe do a back date of some of the things that have happened since June that I have not posted about. I used to use my blog as a kind of diary, and it was fun to do that, and look back. I want to have that record for my kids, grandkids and family still, I hope to update, or continue on from this point in posts.

Bear with me, I am still around, just doing things differently now too.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Father's Day 2013 * Missing my Dad!

Happy Father's Day to all the Dads out there, and Father figures in our lives!

We had a nice brunch at Church this morning... the Sunday School kids helped by making chocolate covered strawberries for it, helping set up, make coffee, put out juice, bring up plates to the narthex, and more. We had a hotdog and brat roast with appetizers honoring all the men of the parish, and some fun duct tape gifts too.

It was nice to have all our kids there and grandkids too!

Here are some photos from this morning...

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Chocolate Bacon Skewers... YUMMM!!

A friend of mine had posted a recipe for this, and it sounded like something fun to try.  I changed the recipe a bit, and used what I had here at home to make it... they turned out great!  A new taste sensation I might just have to make for the Father's Day Pot-Luck Brunch at Church!

The recipe called for thick cut bacon, but I just used regular cut bacon.
Weave it on a wooden skewer ribbon style. The recipe said to brush it with maple syrup generously. I couldn't find my pastry brush, so I just squirted some maple pancake syrup on both sides, generously. Make sure you foil line a baking pan (with sides), and put the bacon skewers on racks too.  Bake at 425 for at least 10 minutes on both sides, turning after 10 minutes. I actually had to bake it a lot longer than 10 minutes to get it crispy, the way I like it.

This is the bacon after it was done baking in the oven.  Let it cool well, then add chcolate drizzled on both sides.  I used those chocolate disks that you can melt in the microwave.  You melt them in a dish for 1 1/2 - 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds.  Then I put the melted chocolate in a plastic bag, snipped off the corner, and squirted it out the hole to drizzle it on the cooled bacon skewers.
The results turned out like this... pretty yummy!!
Loved the saltiness of the bacon with the sweetness of the chocolate.

They were a hit with my friends who I tried them out on tonite too!


UPDATE:  Here are some I made for the Father's Day Brunch ... turned out to be a hit too!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Rhubarb Sugar Cookies with Rhubarb Sauce Glaze Experiment

I had seen a post for rhubarb cookies on Pinterest, but decided to try to make some with ingredients I had handy.  I chopped up some rhubarb, smaller pieces for cookies, added part of a package of raspberry jello sugar to it to give it a little more color and flavor.  I put the mixture in the microwave for about 1 1/2 - 2 minutes, it softened up the rhubarb some and cooked it a little too.  Then I drained it.

I had a package of Betty Crocker sugar cookie mix, all you do is add a stick of butter and an egg to it... so, I made it according to package directions.

I preheated the oven to 375 degrees, added the chopped, drained rhubarb to the cookie dough, and dropped onto parchment paper on a cookie sheet in small spoonfuls.

I already had rhubarb sauce I had made, so I added powdered sugar to thicken it into a glaze. (If I was doing this from scratch, I wouldn't have already pre-sweetened the rhubarb sauce since the powdered sugar sweetens it well.)

I baked the cookies for about 12 - 13 minutes or so at 375, then let them cool off and added the glaze to the tops of them.  It took a few hours for the glaze to dry enough to not be sticky... but I couldn't wait to try one... they turned out REALLY delicious!  They are very moist, even after sitting out uncovered all day long.  I think if I had put them into a sealed container they'd get too mushy or soft, so if I was going to make them for an event, I'd probaby store them in a paper bag or use them the same day.

This is one experiment I will do again, and again!!  YUMMMM!!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

It's Rhubarb Season!!

Our rhubarb plants have been taken over by the wild black raspberry vines here this year ... I love BOTH!  But am sorry that we weren't able to harvest more rhubarb. 

This was all I could find so far under the sharp vines ...

After I washed them off and chopped them up... this is all I ended up with to put in the freezer ... unfortunately, they will be used up in the cakes we love to make with them in less than two months!

Here is the great recipe I call "John's Mom's Rhubarb Cake Recipe", but it is actually great with many kinds of fruit.  If you use a fruit other than rhubarb, you have to be careful and experiment with how much water to add in the final stage before baking, so it doesn't overflow...some fruits are juicier than others I guess?


John's Mom's Rhubarb Cake

Put 2 cups (or a little more) chopped fresh rhubarb
(or you can use frozen too) on the bottom of a baking dish or pan.

Mix together in a separate bowl:
3/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons of shortening (Crisco)
1 cup of flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup of milk (add a little more if the batter seems too dry)

Spread the above mixture over the top of the rhubarb in the baking dish.

Top the batter and rhubarb with a mixture (mixed in a separate bowl) of:
1 cup of sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon cinnamin

Pour carefully over the top of it all,  1 cup of boiling water.
(if it looks like the 1 cup of water is going to overflow a pan
then just use enough to not overflow the pan or baking dish -
it's a real mess in your oven if it does drip over -
use tin foil on the bottom of a baking sheet to prevent spills).

Bake for approx. 45-50 minutes at 375 degrees (a little longer if you double the recipe
for a larger baking dish).

The hardest part of all this is waiting for it to cool so you can eat it!

This is what the finished cakes should look like... yummmmm!