My Version of a Super Duper Blueberry Smoothie

This smoothie is simply a concoction of the healthiest, tastiest items in my kitchen. We have had it as a smoothie AND as a frozen treat. Both ways are delicious. 

  
I put these all on the counter and then added them to the blender. 

I didn’t measure anything.. Just dumped stuff in. Here’s a rough estimate. We split it 3 ways and still had a little bit to freeze. 

1-2 cups of blueberries

2T of cashew butter

1-2 frozen or fresh bananas (I like the frozen because of the slushy factor)

1 cup Greek yogurt, (I used strawberry banana)

5 strawberries (stems and all), 

2-3 T of ground flaxseed

2-3 c of soy or almond milk (enough to cover and blend)

1-2 c of fresh spinach leaves (actually 1-2 handfuls 😊)

   
 
The first day I made this I went on a walk around the farm and Walker was very curious about my cup. 

   
 
I couldn’t resist…

   
 
I think he likes it!  I hope you do, too!

Have a great day!

Amy

Posted in health, Horses, Meals, Recipes | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments

An Overwhelming Response

  
“Just pull this cord, if you need anything.”  I was in a 6 x 8 room sitting in an oversized leather Lazy Boy type chair. The nurse had just injected me with radioactive material that would attach to the sugar molecules that they had put into my body. (I’m not sure if I drank the sugar or if it was a different injection.) The sugar molecules that are attached to the radio active material go directly to highly active parts of your body and light up under the PET CT scan machine. Amazing science! Highly active parts of my body are most likely cancer. So I followed a very strict diet the day before and did very little activity. Once I had the injection of radio active material, I was told to sit very still for an hour and a half. I couldn’t talk, text, read, or move. They brought a warmed blanket to me and dimmed the lights. 

I was drifting off to sleep and replaying my instructions over in my head, when I remembered the nurse asking me if I had any metal on my clothing like zippers or buttons. I told her no. I startled out of my half sleep when I realized I did have some metal on part of my clothing. I wondered what would happen if I went through the machine with this small bit of metal. Would I have to redo it next week?  Would the test not work?  Yikes!  There was so much preparation for this test. I did not want to have to do this again soon. 

I looked to my left at the little cord that the nurse told me to pull if I needed her and figured the sooner the better. I reached over and tugged on the cord. 

Immediately an excruciatingly loud buzzer like a fire alarm burst through the silence. Lights started flashing all around me and a young intern (surely he wasn’t the doctor) hurried into my room to see what was wrong. 

I was overwhelmed by the response I could hardly remember my question. Come to find out my supportive piece of metal would not interfere with the accuracy of the machine. Whew!

I felt like I should apologize and announce to the staff that I would not pull the cord again and that I would just sit here and drop off to sleep. But no one seemed interested. 

An overwhelming response to a need. I think God responds to us in overwhelming ways as if we have pulled the cord in that little waiting room. Psalm 20 says, “May the Lord answer you when you are in distress, may the name of the God of Jacob protect you. May he send you help from the sanctuary and grant you support from Zion. May he remember all of your sacrifices and accept your burnt offerings. May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed. May we shout for joy over your victory and lift up our banners in the name of our God. May the Lord grant all your requests.”

I want to see God’s overwhelming response to my need. I want to recognize his display of love and faithfulness and care. Don’t you?

Just pull the cord, if you need anything. He will respond…overwhelmingly. 

Have a great day!

Amy

Posted in Breast Cancer, Cancer, faith, science, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

Stitch Fix #6

After all the commotion of the last few weeks, I had almost forgotten about my Stitch Fix box that was coming in the mail. It was quite a bright spot for me.  A pleasant interruption. 

  
It was a nice distraction yesterday. 

   
 
Brandy C sent me some fun pieces that included a pair of jeans that I can definitely use.  They are super soft and stretchy. 

  
I liked the tops but decided there wasn’t anything I couldn’t live without but, in case your curious, here they are. Excuse the horses in the background but I can’t seem to take a picture these days without a little equine action. 

   
   
She also sent this bracelet that is secured with a tie and I really like it. So I kept it along with the jeans. 

  
If you want to know more about Stitch Fix, you can read my first post about it here

Have a great day! 💕

Amy

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Cards from Precious Hearts

My husband surprised me Sunday morning with a stack of cards from children in Bible classes at church. I went to class Sunday morning but ran out of steam before worship started so I was home early. 

I love these cards from precious hearts learning who has the power in this world to heal, learning where our hope comes from, learning to care for those who are sick. 

God bless all of you who teach the children in our churches. 

Thank you, Rachel and Rachel! ….and all the children who lifted my name before our Heavenly Father.  I love you!

Just a sample of the most awesome cards ever!!

   
 

   
    
    
    
    
   

Posted in Breast Cancer, Cancer, children, Church, faith, family, friends, health, relationships, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Not Alone

I hate watching TV shows like House or Grey’s Anatomy because the medical environment causes me so much anxiety. I seem to have at least 2 or 3 symptoms of every disease that they showcase. My heart beats fast and hard. I have to take deliberate deep breaths. I feel it. 

The nurse calls my name and takes me through the heavy unmarked wooden door to an exam room. She shows me the hospital gown to put on and leaves the room. I put on the gown and sit on the bed and wait for another nurse to come in and tell me what to do next. I wait and wait some more. I take a deep breath and let it slowly out. I go over Psalm 16 that I memorized several months ago. I get up and peek out the drawn blinds to get at least a glimpse of sunshine and blue skies. I lay back down on the hospital bed, recite Psalm 16 in my head and wonder if I should say it out loud. I let my mind drift and picture a hospital emergency with me as the center of attention. I shake my head to get that image out and instead picture my friends and family who I know are praying for me. My breathing calms down. I relax and pray for healing. I pray for God’s will to be accomplished in my life. I sing (totally in my head), “Have thine own way, Lord, Have thine own way. Thou art the potter, I am the clay. Mold me and make me after thy will. Till I am … molded? yielded? waiting? (I can’t remember the last words so I just start the verse over again) Have thine own way, Lord…”

I realize I am not alone. There is no one around. I think they may have forgotten me here in this little room but I am not alone. I am strengthened by this awareness. I am content to just be here in this medical space with beeps and buzzers sounding off, with people coming and going in the hall discussing colons and bleeding and “are you allergic to any medications?” And here I am immersed in this panic-inducing environment, relaxed and confident. I am not alone. God’s peace that is beyond understanding wraps around me and holds me tight. 

Thank you, God. 

  
Before my surgery on Friday, I knew many, many people were praying for me. They were praying for healing and peace. 

Thank you, friends and family.

I hope you have a great day!

Amy

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Volume Control

  

Words I’ve been hearing this week of August 14, 2015

War of the Words

I’ve heard so many words this past week that are frightening, ugly words that cause me to pause and catch my breath but I’ve also heard so many words of kindness and love. I have to make sure that I focus on the words of hope and life. I have to turn up the volume on those words that bring healing and comfort. The frightening words sometimes get so loud in my head that I can’t hear the other words. I need volume control. 

—————–

Malignant

Love you

Call me

Love you

I’m coming

Your results

Do not be afraid

More tests

We are praying 

Strong

Cancer

Plan

One step at a time

Have thine own way

Love you

Any questions?

Faith

In the Arms of Jesus

Aggressive

Love you

All things work together for good

Tumor

Praying

I can be there in 5 minutes

Treatment

Love you

Biopsy

Pain

Friendship

Eyes always on the Lord

We don’t know

Miracle

Love you 

Surgeon

Fasting for you

Praying

Radiation

You are not alone

I’m here for you

Decisions 

Love you

Praying

Fear not 

Surgery

Family

Love you

What can I do

Chemotherapy 

Cloud of Witnesses 

Heavy heart

Praying

Love you

Posted in Breast Cancer, Cancer, faith, life, relationships | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

Every Step

I am so grateful that the Lord is with me every step of every day. He surrounds me with joy like Psalm 16 says, “You will fill me with joy in your presence.”  I am so glad to serve a God that is close to the broken hearted, who knows the very number of hairs on my head, who says over and over “Do not be afraid.” 

The God of the universe is working all things out for your good (Romans 8:28).

The joy of the Lord is my strength (Nehemiah 8:10).

So whether you can see a storm coming or it just drops in your lap, be like David when he says, “I keep my eyes always on the Lord, with him at my right hand I will not be shaken.”

  
Have a great day!

Amy

Posted in faith, life, Scripture | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Late Summer on the Farm

I woke up early this morning and spent some time in the pasture with our horses before the sun got too hot. 

   
    
    
    
 Have a great day!

Amy

Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Kale Chips

My friend, Terri, brought some kale chips over a few months ago and Meredith and I loved them but I’ve not made them till this week. This week I have made pan after pan of them because one bag makes so many and won’t keep long.  

The only ingredients are kale, olive oil, and salt. 

I bought the bag of prewashed and torn kale, olive oil cooking spray, and salt. 

Be sure to remove all of the stems. The chips are better if there are not stems at all. 

   
  
Spread the kale in a single layer, spray with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt.  Bake at 300 degrees for 10 minutes then turn the pan and bake for 5-7 minutes more. Remove from the oven and let sit for 3 minutes. 

The chips should be eaten right away. They are lightly salty and crunchy.  They practically dissolve in your mouth. 

  
I like having a snack that is full of antioxidants. You can also season with seasoned salt, Parmesan cheese or whatever you have on hand. 

I hope you have a great day!

Amy

 

Posted in health, Recipes | Leave a comment

Recipe:  California Slush

  
California Slush is one of our favorite summertime refreshments. It reminds me of Karen who introduced it to us when we had just moved to a new city. She brought over a big container full of this delicious slushy treat on a really hot day. She was so thoughtful. She helped me feel not so alone during those first few months. 

This recipe was my submission for the Ko Jo Kai cookbook.  It was one of the first ones I thought of when asked to submit a recipe. 

  

My family loves this.  I use whatever fruit suits me at the time. I have pretty much settled on strawberries and bananas because I like the frozen texture. I have used crushed pineapple, cherries, peaches, and other various fruit. I like six bananas in the recipe but Meredith asked me to go easy on them this time so I only used three. I diced them to make them easier to thaw and stir. 

 

2 – 4 cups water ( I use 2 because the flavor is stronger)

2 cups sugar ( I use 1 c. Splenda to cut this in half)

1 large can pineapple juice

1 cup chopped strawberries

1 (12 oz.) can frozen orange juice

1 (10 oz.) jar maraschino cherries, juice only

3-6 firm bananas, peeled and chopped (I like them a little green)

Put sugar and water in microwave on high for 1 minute to dissolve sugar. Let cool. Add all ingredients in large container (I use an ice cream bucket) and freeze for about 24 hours. When ready to serve, thaw on counter for 1-2 hours, stir and serve. Refreeze any leftovers. 

Someone online suggested freezing this in gallon freezer bags. I may have to try that. 

I hope you have a great day!

  
 

Posted in family, Home, Recipes | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments