Thursday, February 24, 2011


     What do you do, when you need comforting? I find, in this troubling world, that I need comfort more and more. Sometimes it seems the world is going insane, doesnt it? Its scary. Everything, and everyone is on shaky ground, its no wonder sometimes I catch myself shivering. I am a worrier, and sometimes have anxiety issues, especially if I get too wound up by stressful news in the world. Over the past few years I have really had to come up with a few ways to find comfort and peace.
     One, I find reading the bible, especially the New Testament and the chapters on Love very comforting. I will read a bit, then pray a bit, then read a bit more. This always helps, especially if I am scared or sad. My favorite comforting scripture, is of course, Psalm 23.
     I also find that "shutting out" the world can help. No, I don't stick my head in the sand, on the contrary, I sometimes spend too much time listening to, watching, and reading about the news. But at the point when I start to get bothered, I have learned, through my wise Husbands counsel, that its best just to "close the door" and leave it all outside. I turn off the computer, and don't watch the TV. After all, though its good to be updated in the goings on of the outside world, its also isn't EVERYTHING. The real world, MY real world, is inside of these walls. And no matter what, THAT is all that really matters. Let the winds blow outside. Inside, we are safe, and warm, and fed. Tomorrow, it will take care of itself, its in Gods hands where it belongs. Worrying over it doesnt change one second of it. But it does make for a miserable today if you let it.
    I also find comfort in books. Climbing into my nice soft bed, or snuggling under my grandma blanket in my cozy living room with some well worn favorite old "friend" is a wonderful way to find comfort. A favorite book of mine is The Pilgrims Inn, by Elizabeth Goudge. It the most wonderful book, written around the end of world war two in England. The people were tired, even the children at that time, the war had left everyone dazed, and broken, and searching. Searching for comfort. The family in this book, find what they seek at a beautiful old riverside inn in the countryside. Elizabeth takes you there, you can almost hear the gulls and smell the rich damp earth of the forest when reading her story. She is up there as one of my favorite authors! I just wish her books weren't so hard to come by, since a few of them are now out of print.
     I also like the Chronicles of Narnia. Those are very comforting. I find the allegory story so sweet, and simple. Finding the underlying story line of good conquering evil so very reassuring. C.S. Lewis, if you don't know, is a bit of a favorite of mine. I can't wait to get to heaven and throw an arm over his shoulder (most likely embarrassing is brittish sense of propriety) and tell him, "Thank you old man, your books have been my dearest friends and companions through otherwise dark and lonely times, you did a fine job!" It will be a great day!
     And before you settle in with your favorite book, don't forget a cup of tea! Any tea will do, I prefer your regular old black tea with a drop of milk and a dash of sugar. Peppermint and chamomile can do wonders for your nerves! And, if your not a tea drinker (sigh) have yourself some cocoa. Any warm drink can take a chill off your nerves, be it a physical or an emotional one. Our ancestors knew what they were doing when they put the kettle on at the first sight of a tear of upset.
     And what sort of comfort list would this be if I didnt mention bubble baths? Especially in the winter, when a chill can make anyone feel not so comfortable. Take your favorite book, maybe a glass of wine or a nice glass of water with lemon, and climb into a foamy rose scented tub, and if you're like me, the hotter the water is the better! I don't care how achy or crampy I feel going into the tub, I ALWAYS feel better on the way out. Baths even help my headaches! So go ahead and indulge. Simple pleasures are often the most pleasant of all.
     And last, but certainly not the least, the best comfort, is of course a HUG:) Find your Love, be they a spouse or a child or a parent, and ask for a hug. Not a quick one arm "cheep" affair, no, a long, tight, lingering , neck snoozling hug. And if you really need to, have a little cry. Go on, it feels so good to let go of the worries and fears. The person your hugging won't think any less of you, I promise! I bet they probably need a hug just as much as you!
      Now don't you feel better?
                                 God Bless:)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

No Knead Bread

     After reading a post on one of my favorite sites, Chickens in the Road, I decided to try making "no knead bread". I have no problem kneading bread, in fact I enjoy it. I have wanted to find a good recipe for the no knead kind though, for my Mom, who has achy joints and also a tetchy tummy. Homemade bread is SO much more agreeable on the tummy than store bought. I am pretty sure its because there is no "junk" in it.
     So this is my first attempt at it, I was a little skeptical, and it didn't work the way I thought it would, so I am going to tweak the recipe a bit. It did LOOK delicious, and it was crusty, and chewy, and very good. But it was a bit denser than I would like, so I will try again and add a little more yeast and either more water or less flour, as the dough was just way to dry. I will probably add a couple teaspoons of sugar too, as that will help the yeast to spread through the dough better.
     I have been having a busy week, especially intellectually, and its only Tuesday night! I think I may take a day off from using the computer tomorrow, to give my brain a little rest. I have been striving very hard, to dig through the truth of the Word, and to share those thoughts with a couple of loved ones. One, I have some very high hopes of winning with the Lord's help. The other, I don't think it looks good, but I don't have the Lords eyes. Hopefully, some seeds I plant (with the help of the Spirit) will take route in their heart. That's my prayer anyway.
     I did get to have a wonderful conversation with Poot yesterday, about the Divinity of Christ. I am SOOOOO thankful that we were both won to the Lord at the same time! I just can't imagine being alone in my faith, and not being able to talk about God with my spouse. So many blessings to be thankful for!
     He came home just after I had put the kettle on, so we were able to have tea while we talked. That was so nice, and impromptu "tea" with my Love:) I even convinced him to use a "pretty" cup. He doesn't like using them as a general rule, as they only hold about 6oz, but since we were sitting at the table, he could refill his cup as many times as he wanted, so he agreed. He had the blue, I had the yellow. We also had some Cadbury chocolate digestive biscuits, which are a great treat (and a great find here in the US!) from the Christmas Tree Shop.
     I am looking forward to doing a little shopping this weekend, to pick out a new camera. Just a basic one,  the one I have has something wrong with it. It won't take pictures if the light is too bright, and it definitely won't sake pictures outside in the sunshine. I want to be able to have picture memories from our camping trips and adventures, so I am very excited:)
     Speaking of adventures, we are very excited, in a couple of weeks we will be going on our yearly weekend "stay-cation" with my older sister and her family. We are hoping that this year my Little sis and her new hubby will be able to go too. Every year (or at least the past two) in February we go down to Freeport, and stay in a hotel for a couple of nights. This years trip was a little delayed, due to my big Sis, in her capacity as a professional photographer, having to wait for this new little arrival,

     Baby B, at a whopping 9.9, born today to our cousin and his girlfriend. Such a beautiful baby! Who I can't wait to snooogle, by the way:)
     (ah hem, back to vacation talk,,,) We get to use the indoor pool and hot tub, eat the complimentary all you can eat breakfast, and troup around the downtown shops and the Maine Mall without having to fight through tourists. Its a nice (affordable) midwinter break, and during a Maine winter, you NEED a break!
     So, I should really sign off for the night. I hope you are having a pleasant night, cozy and comfortable with someone you love! God Bless:)

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Yummy Rice!

     I hope you all have had a restful weekend, and I am sorry I haven't posted more this week. I came down with the flu, it really hit me yesterday. Icky:( But I felt better when I woke this morning, which was really a good thing, as we had to take Sundays School this morning at church. The kids (all girls ages 5-7) were a bit,,,, wild, I think would be the word I am looking for. Next week we will be going back the the old trick, bribery  reward. We'll have to take a brief trip to the donut shop pre-church.
     Anyway, I had a request to share my rice recipe. I'm pleased, as I think this is one of my best "inventions" so far! I started out with just an idea, and tried finding a recipe for it online, but the closest I could come to was a recipe for risotto. I don't usually buy "special" rice. (even though I LOVE basmati, unfortunately its beyond our budget) We stick to plain, long grain white rice. We have tried many different kinds, but our favorite is Hannafords store brand. We buy it in bulk 8lb bags. That's the largest bags that they sell, or we would probably buy more. Once opened I just use an airtight food service bucket. They come in many different sizes, the ones I have used to have frosting in them.
     Anyway, as rice is a "cheep" food that stores well I have been trying to incorporate it more into our meals. Poot is pleased, he LOVES rice. I am more of a pasta girl myself:) So, here is my invention,

     Parmesan, Garlic and Herb Rice
1c uncooked long grain rice
2T butter or marge
2c water
2 Chicken flavored bullion cubes
2 cloves minced garlic (or, if like me you buy it jarred, about 1 dessert spoon full)
1/4c grated parmesan
1t Italian seasoning
1t dried parsley

Melt the butter in a med sized saucepan over med high heat, add the rice and toast for a min or two. Add the garlic and stir and saute for another min. Add watter and bullion cubes and stir until the cubes are mostly dissolved. Reduce heat and simmer covered for 15-20 min or until rice is done. ( check your brand of rice's directions, brown rice can take up to 40 min) Remove from heat and gently stir in the cheese and herbs, cover and let sit for a couple of min. Serves 2 or 3 people with big appetites as a side dish.

  This is very good, kind of reminds us of rice-a-roni, only with cheese. Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentines Day '11

     We had our most PERFECT Valentines day here in the Evans household last night. I am still smiling about it. I just LOVE Valentines day. To me it means SO MUCH MORE than cards and chocolates. (though those are very nice things) I posted on my facebook what it means to me:
Why I love V-Day,

I love Love,

I Love to Love

I Love To Be Loved

Do I only love, or get loved ONE day a year, absolutely NOT! 365 Days a year I share Love with the best Man, Family, Friends and God there is:) One day, its not too much to ask to focus a little more on LOVE than on laundry, bills, school, or work. I don't see the crime in it.
     Here in our little home, we LOVE to love on each other, and having a special day set aside where we both put special effort into showing our love to each other gets us excited! We stated planning for our special evening a few days ago.  Poot asked me where I would like to go out to eat, I said, HOME! I love eating out, but NOT on V-day, that is akin to going shopping on Christmas eve! Madness! So I created a special dinner menu.
Boneless chicken breast, stuffed with chive and onion cream cheese them wrapped in bacon,
My Yummy parmesan, garlic and herb rice,
With fruit and cream tartlets for desert.
     I spend the day, while my Poot was at work, cleaning and prepping dinner.I tried to choose foods that were elegant, but not too fussy or complicated. The only fiddly item were the tarts, and that was fiddly in a fun kind of way.
   Then Poot came home, and even before he stepped through the threshold, he handed me with a big cheeky grin on his face,,,

     I Loooooove roses, and for some reason I can't quite understand, chocolates always taste better when eaten from a heart shaped box. After hugs and kisses, and his saying how "gorgeous"(his words!) I looked he went off for his shower and I put the chicken in the oven. Then, he did something very special,,,
    He dressed up for me,,
    Usually, in the evening after his shower, he goes straight into Pj's. But, he saw I was making an effort to have a "restaurant" style dinner at home, even jokingly saying we were having dinner at Che' Shannon's Cafe, and he put his fanciest clothes on. Awwww :)
     Then we say down to dinner, (excuse blurry pics, someday soon I WILL be getting a new camera, grrrr


     Dinner came out better than I had hopped, the food looked beautiful and tasted delicious and Poot couldn't stop "MmmMmm"ing the whole time. He praised me highly, which I have to admit, I loved. I wont mention how he almost caught his arm on fire while going for the last bits of chicken on my plate I couldn't finish. Oh my! I happened to have a fork in my hand, and he wondered why I suddenly was trying to stab him!!!  Note to self,,,, get Taller candles, that cannot be easily reached over!
      Anyhow, after nearly killing me with fright he did manage to really surprise me (he's so sneaky)
After some nonsense about wondering who had called earlier he asked me to check the caller ID (located on the desk in the bedroom) There he had put a set of surprise gifts for me,

     In case you can't read what's on the note it says "WHO DO YOU LOVE BABY!"
On the evenings my hubby unwinds by playing PlayStation I usually like to either watch movies on netflix on the computer, or play SIMS, so these are a special treat!

    Oh, we had a lovely day! I hope you all enjoyed your day, and shared it with someone you love! Valentines doesnt have to be about romance, it just has to be about LOVE:)

Monday, February 7, 2011

My morning Cup of Tea

     I like to have a cup of tea while reading the Word each morning. This morning's cup has some beautiful pink roses on it, and was a gift from my Grandmother. Tea is wonderful, and I usually drink it in a mug, but nothing makes you feel more ladylike than raising a pinkie while drinking from a delicate piece of china.
     This week I will be working on combating my temper problem (wish me luck!) with these scriptures, and the Lords help.
  "Whoever is slow to anger has great understanding, but he who has a hasty temper exalts folly."
                                                                          Proverbs 14:29
  "Whoever is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city."
                                                                           Proverbs 16:32
     I have a quick temper, among many other faults, and this week I am going to memorise these two verses and repeat them daily in my head, especially when I am getting frustrated. After all, if our Lord himself used the Word to combat Satan, then I will be more than able to use it to combat my irritability!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Wonderful Sunday

     I am having a wonderful day:)
     Its Superbowl Sunday! I don't watch football, but the Hubby does, we have another couple coming over, Jen and Harry. Harry is going to watch the game and Jen and I are going to work on knitting/crocheting. I have a frozen lasagna in the oven, baking up for an early dinner to be had with salad and garlic bread, MmmMmm! I also just made up a quick batch of chocolate chip cookies, for something sweet later:)
    We started the day out by going to church. We were really hoping that one of Poot's (that is what I call my Hubby) co-workers and his wife would be joining us today. I even rearranged Sunday School duty so that we would be able to sit with them, but they had to stay home and take care of the granbaby, poor little mite had a cold. We are really hoping that they will be able to make it next Sunday though. I think they will really enjoy it, and it would be WONDERFUL to have some friends get to know Christ, as of yet we have not been able to convince anyone else to come and see what our Church is like. I am hoping God will work on their hearts though, as I know that some of them would REALLY enjoy going.
    The sermon was great too, our pastor has been doing a series on character, and it is really speaking too my heart. I have also been reading Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis and I have been making progress on my own path with God. It is such a GREAT feeling! Our Pastor, bless him and his family, are going through a trying time. But because of this, I think he is closer to the Lord than ever, and that encourages and inspires me.
    Well, that about it, got to go entertain now!
    I hope you have had a wonderful Sunday yourself, God Bless!

Friday, February 4, 2011

A few things about me

    Hello again. I am super excited to see a couple new followers, YAY! Thanks for reading my silly little thoughts and I hope to get to know you well! I haven't done anything terribly crafty today, so I can't write about that, yet I still have the urge to write, so I thought I would tell you a little about myself, hope it isn't too boring:)

     1. I am a girly-girl. My favorite color is pink, I love bubble baths and hats and embroidered hankies. I no longer make apologies for who I am, my likes or dislikes. I spent a great deal of my childhood wanting to change who I was, the way I looked, even my name. Then, without me even noticing, I started to like ME! I am not conceited, I know I am no supermodel, but I am GLAD I am not. I would most likely be vain and proud if I was, and those are not qualities I would not wish for.
     2. I like weird things, and I like that I like weird things. Like anchovies, and sushi, and liver and Palak Paneer. Actually, what IS weird about me is the fact that, food wise, I have very few dislikes. That is how I have maintained this lumpy, soft and womanly figure, lol. I should be on a diet, everyone else is after all, but there seem to be just toooo many good things on the naughty list!
     3. I love all things British. I love their TV shows (at least the classics) and their period dramas. I love their food, their history. I most especially love TEA! I have had this fascination for most of my life. Even went so far as to marry a Scotsman (PS, never, never, NEVER call a Scottish person British, they HATE it!) and lived in Glasgow for a couple of years. (we are long since divorced and while I don't miss him I do miss THERE) One thing we Americans lack, with all our Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts is real, honest, Tea Shops! I miss those A LOT! Sigh,,,
     4. I dress like a girl (I know this comes under #1, but I thought this deserved its own #) I wear frilly frocks, lace, and ruffles. I wear my hair long most of the time, and I like to curl it with good old fashioned curlers. I ardently LONG for the bygone days when girls wore crinoline and petticoats and hats and carried parasols. So, in the summer, I wear hats:) Straw hats mostly. When I see them at flea markets and charity shops I snatch them up. Am I the only one that wears them around here? YUP, Do I care,,, not at all my lovelies:)
     5.   OK,,, I am starting to run out of ideas,,, lets see, what else,
Oh, my hubby and I have a dream of one day homesteading, and maybe even being self sufficient. I want goats,,, really bad! And ducks, and chickens! Not because I like chickens, but because they are tasty! In all seriousness though, the way our food is produced worries me. Not only is it unnatural, but it is unsustainable. Not to mention rampant consumerism. It isn't right, and I am positive it isn't the way God would want us to be living. Besides, wouldn't it be soooo nice if Hubby didn't have to start a snowy day by getting behind the wheel of a car and risking his life to drive 45 min to work, and then spend the rest of the day risking his life driving deliveries all around the state, all to earn somebody ELSE some $??? Oh it would be lovely!
      6. I like adventures. We both do! Every summer we go on "adventures", we drive off and take roads we have never taken before and see if we can get lost. (with a map in the back seat mind you. We are adventurous, not stupid) We are working our way through camping all over the state. We wish we had more time to take LONG road trips, and maybe someday, instead of homesteading, we'll be Gypsies:)
     So, I guess that is enough of my ramblings, hehehe. I am still waiting for the Hubs. When I am bored I tend to ramble. I hope you all have a wonderful evening!
    Nighty Night!   ~Shannon

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Snowed in for the day

     Well, there is yet another blizzard blowing outside. I am beginning to feel like I am trapped in The Long Winter. There is already about a foot of snow out there, and its only half way done! Luckily the Hubby got the day off today (which is unusual, as they usually have him driving through this stuff) and we are nice and safe at home. He cooked breakfast for us this morning. Waffles, blueberry pancakes, sausages and bacon, yum yum!
     I set the table with a cheerful snowflake tablecloth and a candle,

     I sliced up some oranges and added some fresh blue berries, it was all so yummy! We invited our friend and neighbor who lives upstairs down to join us, and it was a lovely morning.

     He even washed the dishes! What a wonderful Hubby! Now I am settling down and going to watch Stephen King's Storm of the Century, which is somewhat of a tradition every winter, during a big storm:) I  will be finishing up a pair of light blue mittens I am knitting,

     I haven't decided if they will be going to a charity, or if I will add them to my collection for a craft fair next winter, we'll see:) Have a wonderful day, no matter what the weather, God Bless!