Sunday, January 29, 2012

"Like My Mother Does" The Importace Of A Mother's Unconditional Love and Guidance

Like My Mother Does lyrics
Songwriters: Nathan Chapman;Elisabeth Rose;Nicole Williams

Irene,Diane, Ruth Ann, Mom Easter 1958

People always say I have a laugh
Like my mother does
Guess that makes sense
She taught me how to smile

When things get rough
I've got her spirit, she's always got my back
When I look at her I think
I want to be just like that

When I love I give it all I've got
Like my mother does
When I'm scared, I bow my head and pray
Like my mother does

When I feel weak and unpretty
I know I'm beautiful and strong
Because I see myself
Like my mother does

I've never met a stranger, I can talk to anyone
Like my mother does
I let my temper fly, but she can walk away
When she's had enough

She sees everybody
For who they really are
I'm so thankful for her guidance
She's helped me get this far

When I love I give it all I've got
Like my mother does
When I'm scared I bow my head and pray
Like my mother does

When I feel weak and unpretty
I know I'm beautiful and strong
Because I see myself
Like my mother does

She's a rock, she is grace, she's an angel,
She's my heart and soul, she does it all

When I love, I give it all I've got
Like my mother does
When I'm scared, I bow my head and pray
Like my mother does

When I feel weak and unpretty
I know I'm beautiful and strong
Because I see myself
Like my mother does

Like my mother does
I hear people saying
I'm starting to look
Like my mother does

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Sharing A Great Find: Winnie-The-Pooh: A Valentine For You

I bought this movie for Emily 
 I first watched this movie with my eldest grandchild Emily when she was about two years old, and she is now almost thirteen.  I so love the song Place In The Heart from this movie; a lovely message that is oh so true!

  Places in the Heart (Winnie the Pooh: A Valentine for You)

[Christopher Robin]

(Oh, Pooh.)

There's a place right here
And it's really rather small
But this rather small place
Knows the grandest thing of all

It knows when understanding can be hard to understand
It knows that words aren't needed
When you take somebody's hand


(Like mine?)

[Christopher Robin]

It knows that you are with me
In everything I do



[Christopher Robin]

It's that special corner of my heart
The place that I call Pooh


(Oh, Christopher.)

[Christopher Robin]

There are places in the heart
That always know a friend
In good and glad and sad times
The heart remembers them

There are new friends yet to meet
There's a place for them to start
But old friends always keep their
Places in the heart


(Old friends like...)

[Christopher Robin and Pooh]


[Christopher Robin]

(Oh, Pooh. I care just as much about you as I always have.)


(I guess I thought that, too. Still, it's very nice to hear it said.)

[Christopher Robin]

(chuckles Silly old bear.)

[Christopher Robin, Pooh, Tigger and Rabbit]

There are places in the heart
That always know a friend
In good and glad and sad times
The heart remembers them

There are new friends yet to meet
There's a place for them to start
But old friends always keep their
Places in the heart

[Christopher Robin]

(I love you, Pooh.)

Winnie-The-Pooh: A Valentine For You (First Half) by TheClassicDisneyChannel

Winnie-The-Pooh: A Valentine For You (Second Half) by TheClassicDisneyChannel

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

IllumiNations, Epcot Reflections Of Earth

This is one of my favorite things to see while visiting Epcot!  It is an amazing live pyrotechnic/fireworks  with laser light, video display images, and a moving musical score; creating an inspirational feeling of deep joy and peace.  I find it quite an emotional experience.  If you do decide to stay after dark, you want to get to the World Showcase Lagoon by at the very least 8:45 PM in order to get that front row position.  Be sure to wear warm clothing if you go during the late fall to winter months.  It can go as low as 40 degrees  by 9PM when the show begins.  

As per Disney this is a three act show:

  • Act 1: Chaos — Bear witness to the explosion at the dawn of time that brings about the creation of Earth, where you are invited to observe the Inferno Barge, a liquid-propane mechanism launching balls of fire 60 feet into the air.
  • Act 2: Order — Behold the glowing Earth Globe as it glides peacefully to the center of the lagoon, illuminated with—and celebrating—the famous faces and achievements of our time.
  • Act 3: Meaning — During this final act, the Earth Globe blossoms to reveal a torch and the glow of a thousand fireworks and laser lights that fill the night sky in a shimmering kaleidoscope of color and sound, propelling us into the future. 

     Each time I had seen it, it was featured at 9PM, however you may want to check this out when arriving at the main gate. 

    Reflections of Earth is an outdoor show and subject to cancellation due to inclement weather.

    Sunday, January 22, 2012

    Remembering My Grandfather On What Would Have Been His 112th Birthday!

    Pappy with my daughter Jamiann 1982

    Today would have been my maternal grandfather's  112th Birthday.  Happy Birthday Pappy!  His name is Howard Norman Eck, he was  next to the youngest of twenty-one children born to Margaret Hinkel Eck, and  Frances Eck in Weatherly, Pennslyvania. 

    The family had lived in Mauch Chunk, now known as  Jim Thorpe, PA, and at some point in time they moved to Phlllipsburg, NJ.  When  my grandfather was in elementary school, they lived on what was known as Dish  Water Row, which sat above South Main Street on the left side traveling toward  Alpha on that long stretch just before the Norton's Liqour Store by Green's  Bridge.

    Dishwater Row got its name from the women who  lived up there throwing their dishwater over the front porch, and it would hit  the passing trolley cars.  I actually remember when the trolley tracks were in  the middle of S. Main and ran all the way up Rt. 519 into Alpha.  They ran along  519/Third Avenue,  making a right turn onto High Street, over the tracks they  continued toward the left down Railroad Avenue in front of Kutzman's Gas Station  and ran all the way down toward what was Lyons Electric, just below the current firehouse.

    When Pappy lived on Dishwater Row he and his  siblings climbed aboard slow moving railroad coal cars, and kicked off coal,  carrying it home in old pillow cases to be used to heat their home.  I find it  hard to believe that they told the truth to their mother as to where they got  it.  She was a strict Christian woman and would never have approved of such measures.  Once he took his little sister, my Great Aunt Ree  on board with him, she became too scared to jump off and they ended up in  Stewartsville before they could get off of the train.

    At one point in time, they moved to what was at  that time the oldest home in Phillipsburg, and it sat where the Armory sits  today on Heckman Street.  It was a field stone home similar to the Roseberry  House which still stands next to the Phllipsburg Middle School.

    While living there when he was about 17 years old  he was crossing the Ingersoll Rand property, and was hit by a jitney engine. He  was taken to a hospital in Philadelphia where he had brain surgery to save his  life.  They removed part of his skull in his forehead, which left a life long  dent there.

    At the age of twenty he married Mary Beatrice Kohl,  and a year later my mother Ruth Marie was born in Betts Hospital in Easton, PA.   When my mother was eighteen months old, her mother left her with her  mother-in-law, my great grandmother Margaret while she went home to visit her  parents in Easton, PA.   While she was visiting them she had a seizure.  Little  was known about seizures back then, and her family committed her to a nursing home.

    When she did not return to their home in Phillipsburg, NJ that evening, he went looking for her at her parent's home Her brother was the Chief of the Easton Police Department at the time, and was there to greet him. My  grandfather became upset because they would not allow him to see his wife and  take her home. He had my grandfather arrested, and would not allow anyone  to visit my grandmother.

    Approximately twenty years later my mother went to  visit her mother in the very depressing nursing home.    The attendants said that no one ever came to visit her from her own family.  My  mother and father had my brother Buddy with them and he was just a baby.  Her  mother made a fuss over him, saying "I have a baby just like you at home."   Those words broke my mother's heart. Our grandmother died at the age of 57 of a brain tumor.  When my mother walked up to the casket all the  lights in the funeral parlor went out.  Everyone said it was an omen.   I told  my mother that I think it was her mother's way of telling her that she knew that  she was her little baby girl.

    I really don't know much more about my grandfather's life until  1955 when his home on Delaware Drive in Easton was flooded during Hurricane  Diane.  Pappy moved into our very small four room home on Shimer Street in  Phillipsburg.  His arrival into our home was proof positive of my mother's  ability to love unconditionally and give with all her heart.  It also showed that  she ruled the roost, and the our father went along with her wishes.  My parents  already had three children on August, 17, with the new arrival of their fourth  on the day of the flood August 18, 1955.

    Mom, Dad, a fourteen year old son, seven year old  daughter, four year old daughter, and a brand new baby in a two bedroom, four  room one half of a double home with an outhouse, and now our grandfather.  He  slept on the couch for the next three years until we moved to Alpha, NJ where he  finally had his own bedroom.

    No matter where we lived all the kids loved Pappy,  and they all called him Pappy. Sometimes he babysat for us while Mom worked at  our snack bar.  I can remember him making us French Toast that he called Egg  Bread.  He showed us how to melt a puddle of butter in the middle and sprinkle  on sugar.  I still eat it that way, and love it that way.  He would have made  Paula Deen proud.

    Once he bought me a second hand bike, painted it  silver, and placed a saddle bag behind the seat and a basket on the bars.  I have a fond memory of Pappy  and I hopping the bus  to downtown Phillipsburg from Alpha when I was  twelve.  He took me shopping at  Stone's Dept. Store and bought me a red  bathing suit, white lace cover up, straw  hat, and flip flops.  We then  went to the Wardell for their famous steak, and then caught the Trans Bridge Bus home to Alpha.

    He sang us songs  that were not quite appropriate for adults to sing to children, but not all  together that bad either.   We definitely memorized them and sang them to our  friends.

    Way down south where the grass grows green,
    The bull frog  jumped in the sewing machine,
    The sewing machine went around so fast...
    it  sewed ten stitches in the bullfrogs a*s!

    Oh, how we would giggle and  laugh, and the more you laughed around Pappy the more he sang...

    There  was a dog, his name was Jack
    He pooped(sh*t)all over the rail road  track.
    The train came by the poop(sh*t) flew high,
    and hit the conductor  right in the eye!


    Gene, Gene he made a machine,
    Joe, Joe  made it go...
    Frank, Frank, turned the crank...
    His father came out and  gave him a spank
    and knocked him over the cinder bank.
    Gene, Gene he  made a machine,
    Joe, Joe made it go...
    Art, Art left a fart,
    and blew  the machine all apart!

    He also told the best stories.  If you have  ever seen the movie "Big Fish" well that movie reminds me of Pappy.  On one  particular day when Pappy was in his late seventies or early eighties while  sitting around my mother's kitchen table, my brother Buddy encouraged Pappy to  tell us the story of the Sunshine Man.

    In a very enthusiastic manner he began to  tell us that he saved this man he called the Sunshine Man from drowning in  Indian Head Lake.  He said he was the biggest man he had ever seen, he was 21  feet, 18 inches tall.   As he described him, Buddy was doing the "David  Letterman" interview thing, encouraging him to elaborate, all the while we are  all laughing until our stomachs hurt, and Pappy loved it, the more we laughed  that more eager the expression on his face became.  He cajoled, "He was so big  they picked him up and put him on a fire truck and his feet hung off the end."   "Then they took him to an airplane hanger, because it was the only thing with a  tall enough ceiling."

    Another of his stories always reminded Buddy of the  TV show Soap where the grandfather thought he was Teddy Roosevelt.  He always  told a story of how he signed the Peace Treaty with Woodrow Wilson and Kaiser Wilhelm at the end of WWI.  He actually told a woman from a government office  that he was a veteran, and when I said he wasn't she acted as though I was  lying.  So, I simply said to him, "Tell the lady about what you did with  Woodrow Wilson." 

    I am not sure if he had delusions or he  incorporated things he saw on TV into his own memory brought on by the brain  injury of his youth.   Whatever the case may be, he became a much more  interesting character.

    When he came to live at  our house after the flood, he realized he was missing one shoe of a perfectly  good pair.  He went downtown in Phillipsburg to Harold's Shoe store and tried to  convince the clerk to sell him one shoe to match that one he had.

    He loved trains, and would often talk about the  Baltimore Ohio Railroad, and thought that Baltimore was in Ohio.  When my girls  were little I would take him for rides. Sometimes we just rode around Pohatcong  Township, Milford, and Ingersoll Dam(Now Merrill Creek Reservoir) where he would tell us that he was a night  watchman at the dam when he was young.  But he loved it when I would take him to  Stokes State Forest, High Point, and the Poconos.  When we arrived home he would  tell everyone that I had him either to Port Jervis or Warwick, New York.

    He loved to play the harmonica.  His favorite songs  were Turkey In The Straw, and The Dark Town Strutters Ball.  On Christmas day  1973 I gave Pappy a musical toy monkey that was battery operated, and played the  drums and hit the cymbals while it screeched.   Little did I know that day that  I started a new obsession for my grandfather. Every time anyone came to visit my  parent's home Pappy would go back to his bedroom and return with that monkey to  show it off for entertainment value.  That monkey started a string of musical or  wind up toy purchases for Pappy's birthday and Christmas presents.

    Ever since he moved in with us he would go along  with Mom on her weekly grocery shopping trips. When we were little he always  bought us something that we liked, usually licorice or cookies.  After my  children were born, he was known for having large Hershey bars, and Saltine  Crackers in brown paper grocery bags sitting on his bedroom floor. Every time  any toddler entered Mom's home, they ran straight for his bedroom and asked for  chocolate.

    Everyone of my siblings, and all of my parent's  grandchildren were always known as "Pappy's Little Honey Babe".  He would  repeat that often, along with a little "Deeddle deet, deet,  deedle,  deedle..deet" or a "Joe Bags whatever that meant.  He was always very entertaining in a silly, strange way.

    In the fall of 1978, I took Pappy to Wilkes Barre,  Pennsylvania as my guinea pig when taking my test to receive a Barber  Hairstylist license.  We had to climb a huge staircase and poor Pappy was  seventy-eight years old.  Then the shampoo sink was broken so I had to wash his  hair leaning forward into the sink, and he started swearing when his face got  wet.  I had to give him a shave and clipper hair cut.  I nicked his ear, but  used proper procedure to stop the bleeding, and I passed the test.

    On the way home he talked me into stopping at the  Buckhorn Casino on Rt. 519 between Belvidere and Harmony, NJ for a drink.  I  bought him a shot and a beer, and we made a pact to not tell Mom, as she had  stopped him from drinking after he had bowel surgery.

    Mom started buying non-alcohol wine at Laneco, and  scratched the non-alcohol words off of the bottle so he wouldn't know that it  wasn't real wine.  Once he asked her why all the bottles had scratches on them.   She told him it was the way they unpack them at the store.

    He lived with my parents for the rest of his life.   When my dad passed away before him he said," I wished God took me  instead of Bud." and he cried.  Pappy passed away  in March of 1989 at the age of eighty nine.
    He was ambulatory right up until  the end and had gone shopping with Mom the weekend before he passed away.

     I am so glad that he was our grandfather, and that  we grew up in an extended family.  I am so grateful that Howard Norman Eck came  into this world on January 22, 1900. We will hold him in our hearts until that  day when we can hold him in our arms once again.

    Thursday, January 19, 2012

    ❄❄❄Snow Day by Diane Dunwell-Hoffman ❄❄❄

    Lying on my ice cold belly atop the hand me down Flexible Flyer, weighted down by not only the freezing wet bundles of coat and leggings, but you perched up there with your tummy pressed to my back.

    Swoosh, off we go down, down the snow covered hill, with icy crystals stinging our cheeks, you holding on for dear life, me trying to steer those stiff wooden handle bars with numb fingers tucked into frozen mittens.

    Slowly the sled comes to rest at the edge of our yard. "Up again?" you ask. "No I'm goin in." I reply as I trudge up the porch steps, stomping off snow from my rubber boots. 

    As I open the front door, I hear Mom shout, "Close that door we're not heating the outdoors!"  Then with her next breath, "Don't track that snow all over the house!"

    After a half hour passes, Mom helps me bundle up again, replacing the wet mittens with a pair of heavy socks.  As she escorts me to the door, she expounds, "For the life of me, I can't understand why you are going out into the cold again, only to be right back in here in no time at all tracking snow all through the house!"

    Those were the days, when sleds were our only means of transportation on a day when school was closed, snow was fun, and socks were mittens!

    Dedicated to my sisters, Irene, and Ruth Ann who were my sledding partners, when there was one sled and four kids.
     © 2000, 2003, 2005, 2010, 2011,2012 by Diane Dunwell-Hoffman. All Rights Reserved.

    Friday, January 13, 2012

    Apple Pie Is Fun To Make

    This is my youngest of six grandchildren. We made this video in June of 2010 when she was a little over three years old.  She will be five in March 2012.  She loves to sing and entertain just like both of her parents!

    Just look at her now...Here she is at her fifth birthday party on March 17, 2012
     I didn't tell her to pose like this.  I think she was imitating the Disney Princesses she had just seen this past December in the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World in Florida. 

    Thursday, January 12, 2012

    My Ominous Adventures At True Blue Farm Excerpt

    Although I have written my book as fiction, the only actual fictional element is the paranormal storyline, and the dream of gangsters and death.  The Sam character was a real life family friend who had an amazingly wonderful influence on my childhood.  My Great Aunt Ree and Uncle Bill did live on the exact farm written in the story, and they did raise my mother.  Everything about the description of the home and its property were real.  However, after Aunt Ree passed away in 1978, and Uncle Bill sold the property, the new owner tore the barn down, and leveled the land for planting.  Only the house remains, and that has been totally remodeled.  I was given a tour of it in October 2001, and had tears in my eyes the entire time.  Everything in the house was changed except my memories of it.  

    The story of the August 1955 flood was an actual event and I had written about it in a historical manner.  I also could never forget what I saw when we actually went to the top of College Hill in Easton, PA and saw the horrifying site of chicken coops and tons of other debris floating down the river.  

    While I am honored and amazed by seeing  comments comparing my story to The Wizard Of Oz , I myself see no similarity except for the fact that my mother was actually raised by her aunt and uncle who purchased the farm after my mother married.  There was no rainbow to travel over after the real life flood, no scare crows, lions, or tin men, not even a wonderful wizard!  

    An exact replica at Knoebels Amusement Park
    Excerpt from the book: *That wonderful Chevy truck kept on going, and soon we were riding down the lane that ran in front of their home and bore right towards the barn.  On the right I could see the Ferris
    wheel planter filled with colorful annuals and the entire yard surrounded by iris, gladiolas, flocks, pink and yellow honeysuckle, and pom-pom bushes. Even in the rain these flowers were oh so beautiful. The droplets of rain appeared to be tiny mirrors resting on the soft petals of the honey suckle vines and the fragrant aroma that lingered in the steamy air was simply wonderful.

    If you enjoyed reading the excerpt, you will enjoy reading the entire book.  Please follow the link below to purchase it:

    *Note When reading the reviews please keep in mind they suddenly popped up when an Adult Cyber Bully went on a rampage beginning Dec. 29, 2011, before that date the only review was in 2006, and it was a positive one. 

    Oh gee, look where Anonymous, Why, why, why, got the words for their review of my book: Click Here  Stealing seems to be contagious, first photos, now words!   Guess I can deal with being in the same category as Ian Flemming! Wow, Frank L. Baum and Ian Flemming all in one day! 

    Wondrously Mad is more like it. Now I have seen everything; a book reviewer plagiarizing a review not once but twice:  Click Here AGAIN

    It really just goes to prove my theory that all the bad reviews Since Dec. 29, 2011 were one and the same person!  Some people will never grasp the concept of live and let live...is peace possible? However, her plan backfired as the sale of my book has had a spike since her demeaning rants. 

     ©2006 by Diane Dunwell-Hoffman
    All rights reserved. *This book is registered with the U.S. Library of Congress ISBN: 1-4137-9770-9 (softcover) ISBN: 978-1-4489-2487-5(hardcover)

    Tuesday, January 10, 2012

    Bud's Snack Bar Cheese Steaks

    During the Spring of 1958 my father and his brother Dick, built a small building on the South West corner of Rt. 519 and Rt. 22, next to Bud Burgstresser's Sunoco Gas Station. Presently it would be situated a little toward Rt. 22 next to the abandoned former bank in the Walmart Strip Mall near Ruby Tuesdays. Back then the area of the strip mall was a cornfield the stretched from St.James Avenue/Rt. 519 toward New Brunswick Avenue also known as Alternate Route 22. This area was known as Straw Church Circle before they turned the circle into a cross roads, adding traffic lights.

    The building was almost square, with a slanted roof, and we called it the "Cup", but the sign on top read Bud's Snack Bar. My parent's signature sandwich was their steak sandwich, and what made them so good was Mom's original sauce recipe. Dad had an Auto Detailer paint in cursive Bud's Snack Bar, and the words  French Fries, Hamburgers, Milk Shakes, and Steaks on the sides of his 1959 green Ford pick-up truck.

    Their steak sandwiches were the most popular item on the menu. Our french fries were always made with fresh potatoes, no frozen there. The hot dogs were made as Toby's Cup make them, deep fried in oil. The menu also included hamburger bar-b-que, also known as Sloppy Joes, and hamburgers. We sold ice cream, soda, floats, milk shakes, sundaes, pretzels, chips, Tasteykakes, and candy. Dad also sold produce, such as potatoes, watermelons, and apples on the grassy area between the parking area and the corner.

    We had lots of loyal customers and most of our friends loved to tag along when we worked the counter. During the interim slow periods we would sit on over turned apple baskets or milk crates, and play a game of trying to toss rocks in a basket, and trying to get passing truckers to blow their air horns with our motions of pulling on a horn/s chain using our arms. We would listen to songs on the radio like, Running Bear, Purple People Eater, and I Will Follow Him, and of course we sang along at the top of our lungs.

    In 1963, my parents opened another business on the corner of Rt. 519/Third Avenue and East Central Avenue in Alpha, known as the Alpha Luncheonette. For three years they had kept both businesses running, closing the "Cup" in 1966, and selling the structure. It was a bitter sweet moment, as we no longer wanted to be tied to trying to keep two businesses going as a family, yet we would miss that quaint little "Cup" and all the memories it held.

    Bud's Snack Bar Cheese Steak Sandwich

    2 lbs. Chipped Steak Meat (Mom got hers from the meat counter at the former Central Super Market) We have gotten ours from the Marlin Meat Market near Pottsville, PA, and in most supermarkets you can find Landis in the freezer section.

    2 Sweet Onions (Mom used Bermuda onions, I like to use Vidalia) Chopped/Diced

    2 Green Bell Peppers Chopped/Diced

    12 oz. can of tomato sauce (Mom used Hunts)

    1 cup of ketchup (Mom used Heinz)

    2 tablespoons of A-1 Steak Sauce

    1 level tablespoon of sugar

    1 lb. of fresh sliced white American cheese from a Deli

    6 fresh six inch steak or sub rolls
    (Mom got them from the former N.Y. Italian Bakery in Phillipsburg) I would suggest if you do not have a bakery, try the bakery section of the supermarket, the ones in the plastic bins, not in the plastic bag.

    In a sauce pan, saute the chopped onions in the oil of your preference, (Mom used vegetable oil). Remove from pan and put aside. Add the chopped peppers to the pan and saute them, adding 1/3 of the sauteed onions to the peppers, add sauce, ketchup, sugar, and A1 sauce, and stir occasionally for 20-30 minutes over low heat in covered sauce pan.

    In a large saute pan saute the chipped steak, breaking it apart using two forks pulling in opposite directions (if using a Teflon pan, break up frozen chip steak using fingers into small pieces as you add it to the pan). Add the remainder of the sauteed onions to the steak, and stir through. Steak cooks quickly over medium heat about seven minutes. Add cheese and cover until cheese is melted. About three quarters of the way through cooking the steak, add sliced rolls to a 350 degree pre-heated oven to toast them.

    Add steak to the roll, and top with sauce. If you prefer a steak without cheese leave the cheese off a portion of cooked meat or all of it. If you want it to be a hot steak add hot peppers that are found in the condiment section of most supermarkets.

    If you choose to not make your own steaks and want to eat one that compares, and live in a 30 mile radius of Phillipsburg, NJ Crossroads Restaurant in Hellertown, PA just off the exit of Rt. 78, make a left and it is just down the road a few blocks. The next best steak is from Joe's Steak Shop on S. Main Street in Phillipsburg.

    Quick Chicken Paprikash For Two

    In 2 qt saute pan, saute left over chicken enough for two, about two cups, and 1/2 small onion prefer Vidalia in 1/4 C. butter/Smart Balance

    Season with onion, garlic, powder, paprika, and salt seasoning I use Soul Seasoning (Dollar General 2 bottles for a dollar no MSG)

    Add one cup of sour cream, and one cup of milk,  I use 1% and it works.

    Stir bring to boil and add dumpling mixture [in a medium bowl add baking mix(Jiffy, Bisquick, I use Aldi's brand) and milk stirring until a soft dough forms.] and lower temp to lowest setting, until the dumplings are steamed (uncovered for 5 minutes. Cover pot and cook an additional 5 minutes.) Serve immediately.

    "An oh so simple comfort food for a cold winter evening.  A great way to use up left over chicken!"

    Tuesday, January 3, 2012

    For My Cousin Juli Ann In Heaven

    As written by Diane Dunwell- Hoffman
    January 3, 2010
    Julie Ann Lee Dirisio on her Seventh Birthday in Heaven

    My Birthday in Heaven

    Please celebrate this special day with love for those who are near,
    As I am at peace with happiness divine, so please don't shed a tear.

    Today was the day when on earth my life began that's true,
    But on the day I left that plane, eternal life began anew.

    Just as the song lives on each day in the coo of the mourning dove,
    I celebrate with those who've passed with pure undying love,

    There's only joy, and contentment, no room for sadness and pain,
    Hold me in your heart, until that day, you hold me in your arms again.

    If you are in danger from a Spouse there is help, click here.

    Monday, January 2, 2012

    To Be Or Not To Be? Mayan Calendar Prediction

    One of my Facebook friends posted this question on her page:  Curious. Is anyone putting any stock in the Mayan prediction about 12/21/12?

     Here is my answer:

    Johann Conrad Beissel created the Ephrata Cloister in PA and thought the end was very near, the year was 1732. He had the members sleeping on thin board with wooden blocks for pillows as so they could easily awake at Christ's return as the Bible stated"As a thief in the night." He had married couples who joined give up marital relations and sleep in separate quarters.Well, those that stayed died, were buried, and the group eventually disbanded. It is now a historical site to be toured. The end has been predicted many times in history. There have also been huge earthquakes many times in history as well as floods and crazy weather. Just live and as a follower of Christ myself, I pray and ask God to keep my family in His care. Just think TODAY the world ended for many and their names will be in obituary columns tomorrow. Live, love, and let live. That is all we can do about any of it.

    Sunday, January 1, 2012

    Great Advice For The New Year From Miguel Ruiz...

    The Four Agreements

    “1. Be Impeccable With Your Word
    Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love.

    2. Don't Take Anything Personally
    Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won't be the victim of needless suffering.

    3. Don't Make Assumptions
    Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.

    4. Always Do Your Best
    Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse and regret.”
    Miguel Ruiz