Friday, August 28, 2015

De Colores!

All in color!


Dear Father~

All praise to You on this beautiful Friday morning! 

Thank You for this new day, thank You for allowing me to get out of bed and participate fully as one of Your little Christs.

I pray this morning for marriages and for married folks. May we all be sensitive to the needs and desires of our spouses, may we have an unselfish mind in everything we think and do. Please bless those who are married, and lead each husband and wife closer to You and closer to each other through You. Help us all to keep the marriage bed pure, and to be mindful of the potential consequences of infidelity. 

I pray this morning for all children all over the world. Protect their hearts, minds, and bodies; that they would grow up to know and love You. Be with those who are sick, and those who bully, and those who are bullied, and those who are scared, and those who are lonely. Bless those who have lost a parent or sibling especially. Be their strength, Lord.

Hallelujah, hallelujah!

Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace!!

Monday, August 24, 2015

Satellite Soul

Satellite Soul, from their 1997 self-titled album.

They're from Kansas.

There is a mystery
It's a paradox of sorts
Well, it seems when I am weak
Then I am stronger than before
I can pray for brokenness or not
Either way

I can try to beg You off or bring it on
Let it rain, let it shine
Either way, it don't matter to me
'Cause I know that You're still God and I'm still not
Call it six, half a dozen
Either way, it don't matter to me

There's some who say to me
Life is pleasing to the touch
But I think that it could be
That they don't get out so much
They could try to come with us or not
Either way

Sunday, August 23, 2015

In the Evening

My cool Moto G will take rapid fire photos; my cool Google Assistant will take photos with similar backgrounds and make an animation out of them.

So here, by virtue of this process, I present the suet-loving cute bird.

My cool Moto will also record video. I found I am able to upload even large segments of video to YouTube wirelessly, where it can be edited and then presented via the world wide web.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

What Will The Middle Be Like Without Axl??

Thanking God this morning for cooler temps this morning!

The ride to work was refreshing - windows down on Sheldon Road, US-23, the Lee Road Roundabouts, Old 23, and Grand River Avenue from east to west - with the cold breeze surrounding my rotund upper body like a meteorological massage. OH - it was heavenly! It would be hard to find a more 'perfect' morning: perhaps if the leaves were in their full color; or, of course, if I were not on my way to work.

Blessed be God forever!

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Otis the Quat

I have been telling Otis I was going to write about him one of these days, since he sorely misses his friend Sierra, and needs a bit of cheering up.

Back when I was still working up north, Monica acquired Otis in a three team deal, which brought relief to the heart of sister Mary Ann - by virtue of the fact that she had been working at the animal shelter and thought Monica needed some company. Sister Carolyn (the Chief Animal Lover of them all (can't even squoosh a spider) was also enamored with the idea, as she is the co-person of two dogs and two (very old and very dear) cats.

Otis was always very active and friendly as a young lad, but had the weird habit of disapearing for days at a time, holed up in the back of a storage cabinet or in the back corner of a closet. He has a chip buried beneath his right ear and we were told he is not to go outside at all, and if we ever decided he needed a better home, to return him to the shelter. He did provide Monica some company during the week while I was away, and always tried to sleep on her feet or on her head. And he loved visitors - he would prit and mrrrr and meeeoowwww to anyone who came over.

He also likes to rub his face into everything he can. He rubs his sides and backside into the walls, furniture, cabinets, us. He scratches himself often, and has been awarded the Cone of Shame on one occasion due to an open sore behind his ear. I think he mostly enjoys rolling on the carpet.


Now he runs and hides when someone comes over. He is always hungry, and lets us know it. He gained alot of weight when he first stopped growing, so now I feed him twice a day moderate amounts of food. He likes to sit in the sun, even if it's 90 degrees outside and we've got the air conditioners frantically working.

Basking in the mid-day sun is a favorite hobby of Otis'

He has a very subtle purr - barely audible - but you can feel it if you're holding him. He likes to explore, and is always ready for an adventure. He loves looking outside at the birds and playing at every opportunity.

Here, Otis shows off his 'i see another black and white kitty outside!' look

Otis loves to play - here he is attacking my phone charger cord

He has been a blessing to both Moni and me. His big green eyes, little white mittens, and his readiness to engage in conversation are his distinguishing features. He likes to look at bugs intently, and sometimes paw them, but they are more of a curiosity to him than they are prey.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Recipe #55

I started out thinking I would make taco salad tonight, so I bought some good dark Michigan green lettuce and some Romainian Romaine, along with Tyson boneless breasts and thighs that Kroger had on sale. We've got tons of tomatoes and jalapenos ripening in the garden, and I had some onion and green pepper diced up and ready to go.

My plan was to cook the chicken on the grill and then add taco seasoning in a fry pan for a while for some good chicken taco salad yum.

But, with our new satellite  package, we get the Cooking Channel, and I happened to be watching this show earlier to-day, where the guy goes all over (Portland, OR, in this episode) and tells us about good Mexican food.

I was almost dozing but I remember one place he went to cook up this meat concoction and just pour it over the tortillas and the guy dove right it and loved them. So I says to myself, 'Why can't I do that with my meat?!?'

I tried it and I thought it was pretty good. The seasoning ratios aren't exact - I mostly go by taste, but I've tried to give amounts as a general guide. I cooked the chicken on the grill until it was probably ALMOST done, then brought it in and sliced it very thin against the grain. Into my T-Fal non-stick 12 inch fry pan I put the sliced chicken, along with

1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp hot chili powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
pinch Cayenne powder
pinch red pepper flakes
pinch sea salt
1/4 c diced onion
1/4 c diced sweet red pepper
1 diced garlic clove
2 diced jalapeno peppers - sans seeds
1/2 c water
1 c diet mountain dew
2 oz Absolute Citron vodka
2 oz Worcestershire sauce

I cooked the chicken and all the above with the lid on for about a half hour, stirring often. I then let it go for another 15 minutes or so with the lid off, to get rid of some of the liquid.

I plated two flour taco tortillas, covered each with a handful of shredded cheese, and then topped with the meat. I devoured both while watching the first inning of the Tiger-Astros game in Houston.  (The game is being played in Houston, I was in our living room :-)

The were delicious, and I will do this again.

Tomorrow, we have the leftovers with salad.


Friday, August 14, 2015

Bauds and Bits and Bytes or MOST ILLINIST B-BOY

I do remember in about eleventh grade reading about computers, and their proposed benefits for the future of mankind. I remember GIGO, dot matrix printers, real floppy disks, and the godaweful noise the dial  up modem would make while trying to get online (this was waaaaaaay after high school).
I remember going to a particular file sharing web where you could download songs for free (if you don't count the days of time spent waiting for the download); you 'got' the song from someone else in the ring, and someone could 'get' your songs as long as you were online and vulnerable. I remember choosing eight or ten songs to download before going to bed, with the anticipation of free music in the morning. Most of the time, the connection would get dropped due to someone trying to call your home phone (what other type of phone was there?!?) and I'd wake up to see Rhymin and Stealin at 28% and all the others in the 'waiting for connection' status. A real heartbreaker.

All this comes to mind, because as of about twenty minutes ago, I am at home and surfing on the high-speed, wireless connection call ATT U-Verse. No more phone lines, no more hacking into neighbors' unsecured guest accounts, no more hoping to get qet a signal - we are legal, and with many bars.

With all those bars, I am eagerly anticipating listening to the Beastie Boys

Sean, the nice young man from AT&T, was the star of the day. He didn't charge us a cent and did all the installing that I was supposed to do, bless his heart.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

'Cuz I Can

I woke up this morning and the first thing I noticed right in front of my face was the mattress tag.

The cover sheet had been pulled off (I'm a violent sleeper) and there it was - ancient, frayed, mostly unreadable; its intent clear though: 'IT IS UNLAWFUL TO REMOVE THIS TAG'.

I hadn't even had a cup of coffee, or my fiber shake, but I ripped it off.

I took the tag in broad daylight and ripped it.

And if it had been like four am, I would have been back to sleep in an instant, with no remorse whatsoever.

I was told by my therapist several years ago that I have a propensity for acting as though the rules don't apply to me.

The experience this morning, though, was liberating.
Suffer the consequences, come what may, I felt good.

And isn't that what it's all about?

Aren't we taught this?

I'm worth it.

Please, please me.

I deserve a break to-day.

And so, on my way back from picking up my Walmart insulin at lunchtime, I treated myself to an Arby's chicken sandwich with cheese and lots of produce, a way too large container of greasy curly fries, and at least 24 ounces of diet Mountain Dew... because I deserve it.

: /

We All Believe In One True God

I woke up this morning with this hymn going through my mind... I don't remember singing it much as a congregation, but I do remember it was the music they played during the opening credits of the Martin Luther videos we watched in grade school.

1. We all believe in one true God,
Who created earth and heaven,
The Father, who to us in love
Hath the right of children given.
He both soul and body feedeth,
All we need He doth provide us;
He through snares and perils leadeth,
Watching that no harm betide us.
He careth for us day and night,
All things are governed by His might.

2. We all believe in Jesus Christ,
His own Son, our Lord, possessing
An equal Godhead, throne, and might,
Source of every grace and blessing.
Born of Mary, virgin mother,
By the power of the Spirit,
Made true man, our elder Brother,
That the lost might life inherit;
Was crucified for sinful men
And raised by God to life again.

3. We all confess the Holy Ghost,
Who sweet grace and comfort giveth
And with the Father and the Son
In eternal glory liveth;
Who the Church, His own creation,
Keeps in unity of spirit.
Here forgiveness and salvation
Daily come through Jesus' merit.
All flesh shall rise, and we shall be
In bliss with God eternally. Amen.

Hymn #251
The Lutheran Hymnal
Text: The Nicene Creed
Author: Martin Luther, 1525
Titled: "Wir glauben all' einen Gott"
Tune: "Wir glauben all' an einen Gott"

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Take My Life and Let It Be

There are no praise and worship songs comparable to the old hymns, in my opinion.

Many tunes are associated with this hymn; the melody I remember growing up is the one by Havergal, called Patmos.

When I get caught up in my own direction and my own wants and my own desires, it is good that these words come to mind - 

Take my heart, it is Thine own,
It shall be Thy royal throne. 

Blessed be God forever!

1. Take my life and let it be
Consecrated, Lord, to Thee;
Take my moments and my days,
Let them flow in ceaseless praise.

2. Take my hands and let them move
At the impulse of Thy love;
Take my feet and let them be
Swift and beautiful for Thee.

3. Take my voice and let me sing
Always, only, for my King;
Take my lips and let them be
Filled with messages from Thee.

4. Take my silver and my gold,
Not a mite would I withhold;
Take my intellect and use
Every power as Thou shalt choose.

5. Take my will and make it Thine,
It shall be no longer mine;
Take my heart, it is Thine own,
It shall be Thy royal throne.

6. Take my love, my Lord, I pour
At Thy feet its treasure-store;
Take myself, and I will be
Ever, only, all, for Thee.

Notes from The Lutheran Hymnal
Hymn #400 from The Lutheran Hymnal
Text: Eph. 6:24
Author: Frances R. Havergal, 1874
Composer: William H. Havergal, 1869
Tune: "Patmos"

Thank you to and

Monday, August 10, 2015

Recipe #88 Pork Quesadillas With Yummy Guacamole

Thank You, Father, for this new day.
Forgive us our weekend iniquities, and create in us a clean heart.

I want to thank the fine folks at for the weekly grilling recipes that come to my inbox. Reprinted here, with a few adjustments, is the most recent one - we tried this yestreday and loved it!


The meat and carbs:
Thin sliced center cut pork steaks, about a pound and a half
8 oz shredded Monterrey Jack cheese (i'da used more if we'da had more!)
4 10-inch flour tortillas
Sour cream to taste

For the marinade:
1/3 c diet Mountain Dew
1/3 c EVOO
2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
2 clove garlic diced
2 jalapeno peppers diced
pinch of salt
pinch of ground black pepper

For the guacamole:
1 ripe Haas avocado
4 tbs of your favorite salsa (mine is Meijer Black Bean and Corn Medium Salsa)
1/4 c diced onion
1/4 c diced sweet orange pepper
1 diced jalapeno pepper
1 clove of garlic diced
1/2 c of fresh garden tomatoes diced


In a mixing bowl (don't use a little cereal bowl unless you have extra paper towels and more patience than I do), whisk the marinade ingredients. Place the pork in a sealable plastic bag and pour in marinade. Let this work for as long as you care to - I did ours for about four hours.
Let it get to room temperature before you throw on the grill.

Meanwhile, mix the quac indredients and do not eat it all with the corn chips you found in the pantry.

When you're ready to grill, cook the pork all the way through and bring inside;cut into thin strips against the grain of the meat.

Allow the coals to cool to 100 - 150 degrees.

Brush some EVOO on one side of each tortilla. Flip over, and add meat and cheese to one half of each, then fold over into a half-moon shape.

Grill both sides until you get nice lines on the tortillas, and the cheese melts a bit.

Remove from grill.

Cut into wedges and dip into the guacamole and/or sour cream.

Enjoy with a cold beverage.

This is the first time I've ever made cheesy pork quesadillas, but I will surely make them again

Tuesday, August 4, 2015


Tuesday morning and the sun is shining brightly. We have been afforded a break from the 90 degree heat thankfully! Cool nigh last night (50's) and supposed to be like that the rest of the week!

Our Tigers I fear have had a good almost ten years and have fallen back to sub-mediocrity. Several key players were traded for prospects and we may lose more to free agency during the off-season.

In 2003 the Tigers had the most losses in American League history, in 2006 they won the AL pennant. They were not in the playoffs in seasons '07 - '10, but won the first of four straight Central Division championships in 2011.

In 2011 they beat the Yankees and then lost to Texas (remember Nelson Cruz?).

In 2012 they beat Oakland in five games, then swept the Yankees, then got swept by the Giants in the World Series (remember the .159 WS batting average and TWO of the four games scoring zero runs?!?)

In 2013 they beat Oakland in five games, then lost the pennant to the Red Sox in six games (remember David Ortiz?)

In 2014 as Al Central Champs, they were swept by the Baltimore Orioles in the first round, who were then swept by the Royals for the pennant, who then lost to the Giants in game 7 (at Kauffman Stadium, per the All Star Game win by the AL, in which Tiger Max Scherzer got the win, and Tiger Miguel Cabrera hit the only home run). Whew!

And now for something completely different

Our gaudy salmon colored lilies, from Old House Gardens in Ann Arbor

Our Variegated Phlox, from Annie and the Chicago Flower and Garden Show

Our Obedient Plant - Physostegia - unlike the Miss Manners, ours has intruded into the space of other plants

Our Heritage Farms Beer Can Chicken, roasting diligently this past weekend, infused with savory moistness from within

Our Balloon Flowers, almost cut off from the sun by the taller Daiseys, Turtleheads, and Obedients

Our Mandavilla at work, profusely needing more trellis to grab on to