Forgiveness

Last day of 2016; it finally got here.

I can hear Ella Fitzgerald singing What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve?  Well, to answer that, not a whole lot!

A morning of pampering myself, going to the hardware store, and then out to my house to discuss options with the gentleman refinishing 115 year old pine floors.

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Jimmy is on top of things out at my old farmhouse.

Took an informal poll on Facebook to see what others were having tomorrow for their New Year’s day dinner. Black eyed peas and cornbread was on everyone’s menu. The meat portion varied a bit, common theme being some dish of pork. Two Boston butts showed up in the running, however. Potato salad also appeared to make the list. I don’t think of potato salad during the cooler months – always think of it for the 4th of July. To round out everyone’s menu tomorrow,  the choice green is cabbage. 

My pampering started with making up a batch of my head to toe body scrub. Equal parts coconut oil and baking soda, a little sugar and lemon zest.

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I am also putting a rinse on my hair. My prerogative.  Am I vain? Maybe a little. But aren’t we all about something? Perfectly clean house, in the perfect neighborhood.  The perfect SUV, parked in the garage of that perfect house, in the perfect neighborhood. Ooh, I guess I’m judging now, but let’s face it,  some of you judged me because I color my hair. I forgive you.

Which is something I have learned to do this last year. Forgiving the one or ones who hurt you and do you dirt, is for your benefit more than it is theirs.   It is my duty as a Christian to forgive, but here’s something to chew on along with your New Year’s dinner: it’s not my ‘right’ to be forgiven.   Think about it for a while. I know people who throw out scripture about forgiveness and judging others,  but they never change, making it really hard to forgive. Forgiveness isn’t a one-and-done. We’re all human and ain’t nobody perfect, so we must  go back to the well of human kindness and pull up another bucket of forgiveness. Even if they have never asked, do forgive them anyway and then give them to God.

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Skillet corbread

What’s on our menu tomorrow? Pork chops (Mama’s request), cabbage,  black eyed peas, skillet cornbread, and stewed down apples.

Happy New Year!

Blessings from the Exile’s Kitchen.

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Peppermint Fudge

It’s a new recipe for me; quick and easy  Peppermint Fudge. I usually make cooked fudge from scratch, like my mother and her mother before her. But my time this year is limited and I’m all about making life as easy as possible. So, I found this recipe and tweaked it a bit.

Ingredients:

2- 10 ounce packages of white Ghirardelli melting chocolate

1 can sweetened condensed milk

1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract

30- crushed Bob’s Sweet Stripes mints

What to do:

Line an 8×8 pan with tin foil.

In a 3 quart pot melt white chocolate over low heat and stir in sweetened condensed milk. When the chocolate is fully melted and combined with the milk, add peppermint extract and fold in crushed mints.

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Pour into foil lined pan. Chill in refrigerator till firm. Turn out onto cutting board and cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces.

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I made this for gifts, so I wrapped it up in doily lined pastry boxes, adorned with seasonal stickers.

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Enjoy!

Christmas Blessings from the Exile’s Kitchen.

Keep Kicking the Penny: Word Of Encouragement

It’s cold and I do not function well in cold weather. I know what you’re thinking: How cold could it possibly get in SW MS? This morning it’s a balmy 31° with a windchill of 25°. Thankfully it’s sunny today, but the winds are racing straight out of the North.

Enough of the weather report.

When I added my time card today it added up to 6.66. !  -6.98 + 13.64= 6.66. !

I had to distribute the Community Coffee order around campus. The small yellow hand truck wasn’t up to the task. And as I have said,  ‘Baby its cold outside!’ Thinking I would save a few steps getting into another building, I went in the closest door. Heavy door, small-overloaded hand truck, key pad for alarm at opposite end of the building… Please, Mr. Officer. I really do work here. Just trying to do it and I need an extra set of hands.

I put away that buildings coffee and went to another. On my way to the next building, I spied a penny on the sidewalk. Tails.  Wudint picking it up. Did what I needed to do, reached in my pocket for my $1 for the Coke machine and there was no $1. Grrrrrr.

I grumbled all the way outside, across the parking lot, wind whipping my hair around, my eyeballs frozen open. But lying near the sidewalk was my dollar. I picked it up and walked over to the penny. It was still tails. So, I kicked it! It came up heads.

Moral? Is there a point?

Here ’tis: Big or small life is going to be filled with aggravation and troubles. My troubles were small today. In my recent past my troubles were huge. I know many going through things I cannot imagine dealing with.

We all know Phillipians 4:13. I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.  Hebrews 13:5 is another that keeps me going. He will never leave me nor forsake me.

This life is tough and cold. Keep kicking the penny. It will eventually come up heads.

Blessings from the Exile’s Kitchen.

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Rainy Weekend; Not Complaining

One chimney is out of the farm house. Friday sand mortar was shoveled into buckets and dumped into the driveway. The old bricks were thrown out a bedroom window: I’ll deal with them later- September, maybe. I kinda felt like Cinderella, cleaning out the old fireplace, until I saw the nest complete with mummified mouse! I screamed like a girly-girl!

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Saturday the rain drizzled off and on all day. Not complaining. We’ve had a two month drought and the rain was most welcomed. That morning also brought able hands to hang sheet rock in two bedrooms. I am so thankful they work cheap.  A slow cooker of chili, homemade cornbread and honey pralines were their payment.

The rain has continued. What to do on a rainy Sunday evening? With work, church activities and farm house renovations, I am up against the clock. But my family will be expecting Christmas cookies. The Hallmark Channel playing in the background, I busied myself in the kitchen.

I made two batches of cookie dough. Recipes on the back of toffee and chocolate chip bags are excellent and easy. Here’s a time saving tip: lightly coat big squares of parchment paper with vegetable spray, divide the batches of cookie dough onto the paper and press and roll the dough into logs. The vegetable spray keeps the cookie dough from sticking, of course. It’ll  be a sinch to remove the dough from the parchment, when it’s cookie baking time.

Mark the outside of the cookie dough rolls with precise descriptions of what is in the cookie dough. (I have a nephew with food allergies and I try to be very careful in what I make, when I know he will be coming to visit.)

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Five rolls of cookie dough went in the freezer for baking later in the month: Two Peanut Butter Heath Toffee and three Ghirardelli Chocolate Chip-sans nuts.

Christmas blessings from the Exile’s Kitchen.