One Name

Jase was seven months old. The number was so high on the thermometer the nurse advised me to swiftly get him out of his car seat and strip his clothes off.

We then moved to a back room where I waited for the doctor. The room was warm. Stuffy. The air felt thick with heat. I wished there was a window to be opened. The stale room needed fresh air. Pricks of sweat started to itch my back.

(Minutes before his first seizure.)
When the doctor finally appeared, I gave the rundown of Jase’s symptoms. She carefully examined him as he laid atop the white, crackly paper on the table. Everything seemed to check out.

As she walked back to her desk, something frightened me about the way Jase looked. He was still lying on his back. His eyes were open, but the life inside him seemed gone. His eyes didn’t move, they just stared off into the distance. His chest moved up and down with short breaths. His arms and legs were limp.

 Everything seemed to slow down to an other worldly pace. In a panicked tone I gasped, “What’s wrong with him? Something’s wrong!” The doctor hurried back over to the exam table and stuck the stethoscope to his chest. She called, “Jase? Buddy?”

“God. God!” flew out of my mouth. I had nothing else to offer in my desperation. The doctor patted Jase’s enflamed, glowing cheeks and continued to say his name. I continued to speak the Name of God. It was probably just a few minutes that went by when Jase began to look more alert. Though his body remained weak, his eyes slowly showed life again. Eventually the doctor told me to pick Jase up and get him dressed. She was going to get another doctor. I scooped him up into my arms and wept. I continued to cry out, “Oh God. Oh God!” Clinging to His great name gave me hope. The more I said it, the more peace came over me.

When the two doctors returned, they both appeared calm. The words “febrile seizure” were mentioned- the first time I had ever heard those words. They assured me Jase would be alright, and the spike in his temperature caused the seizure. He would probably take a long nap. We were out the door as if we had just experienced any regular appointment.

(The day we found out he had pneumonia.)
In the short amount of time spent at that office I felt I had aged. Maybe it was a spiritual aging. I had turned to my God, and His presence was palpable in that exam room. His presence left me thankful. He allowed Jase’s first seizure to happen with our own pediatrician in the room. He gave us answers through an X-ray that Jase had pneumonia. We were able to treat his sickness with antibiotics. A friend drove my Mom down to help me- a five hour round trip for her. Other friends brought us dinner. Such expressions of God’s great love for us! Such ways He filled us with peace.

All it took was one name.

What Everyone Should Know About God

"What is IMPOSSIBLE with men is POSSIBLE with God!" Not only do we read this in the Bible (Luke chapter 18, and about 7 other passages), but I have seen this play out with my own two eyes.

I found out about the Write Brilliant Academy about two months ago. Since then I have taken 4 different (FREE!) webinars and mini-courses. God used the course instructors Jonathan and Margaret to powerfully influence me. They wooed me to attend their Write Brilliant Academy like a 16 year old boy looking for a Prom date! My heart has been racing with excitement and anticipation over this opportunity.

The only hitch- the Academy costs a big chunk of change. A chunk of change we absolutely do not have. So about 7 days ago Chuck and I began to ask God to do the impossible and provide the money. We even pinned up a dollar bill in our kitchen and wrote, "1,000" on it to remind us God would do the impossible. We had 8 days to enroll before it closed, but I told Chuck I wanted God to provide today, Monday.

This morning the money had not come in, but I still had several hours until enrollment closed. I got down on my knees and brought my desire before the Spirit once again. Much later in the day as Chuck and I were watching the kids peel and eat (EW!) their dyed hard-boiled Easter eggs, GOD MADE THE IMPOSSIBLE POSSIBLE! 

With 7 hours and 38 minutes to spare, He suddenly parted the waters and paved a way for me to enroll in the WRITE BRILLIANT ACADEMY! I have been asked by a third party not to share the details- though I am bursting to gush about it- but know we have been blown away by our amazing Father God!

What seems impossible to you? Bring it to Jesus and watch him knock your socks off.

That's all for now, I have some classes to attend!

A Cheat Sheet for Reducing Sugar

Hey All! Welcome back! As promised, it's recipe week! I've been figuring things as out I go and doing a ton of Pinterest searching to learn new recipes that help eliminate sugar. Lucky for you, this post will list some of my fav's all in one place! Let's stick to some basics- breakfast, snack, and dinner. (If you didn't read my previous posts, check out Fed Up and Swap and Go first.)

Breakfast Recipes:

Egg and Veggie Casserole

Preheat oven to 375 degrees

10 eggs
1 Cup broccoli, zucchini, or a favorite veggie (or mix a couple!)
1 C shredded cheddar cheese
2 C milk
1 C ground and cooked sausage
S/P to taste

Mix eggs in a bowl with fork. Add the rest of ingredients. Pour all into a greased 9x13 dish. Bake for 35-45 minutes. Once cooled, can last for several days in the fridge.

Baked Oatmeal

Check out for lots of great, healthy recipes! This is one of my favorite breakfast recipes by Kate:

Zucchini Scrambled Eggs

Crack 2 eggs in a bowl and mix with a fork.
Add 1/4 Cup of diced zucchini to a hot, greased, frying pan.
Add S/P to taste.
When zucchini is soft, add eggs and scramble in the pan.
Sprinkle a bit of cheese on top.

***I like to dice up a whole zucchini at the beginning of the week & store in the fridge so I can just toss them into my eggs easy peesy in the morning.

Snack Recipes:

Ab's Favorite Smoothie (found several versions on Pinterest, tweaked to my own liking.)

In a blender, combine:

1 Cup UNsweet almond milk
1 1/2 FROZEN bananas
2 TBS Peanut butter
1/4 C oats

Chuck & Ab's Favorite Popcorn

2 TBS coconut oil
1/4 C + a little more popcorn seeds
Salt to taste

Heat coconut oil on medium in a large pot on the stove. Sprinkle salt into the oil. Add popcorn seeds and immediately put the lid on the pot. Wait for the seeds to pop! Make sure you take the pot off once the seeds stop popping.

Dinner Recipes:

EASY Baked Potato Bar 

Rinse and scrub however many potatoes you'd like.  While still wet, place them in a crock pot on low for about 6 hours. Stab potatoes with a fork & check for softness a couple hours before dinner time- you made need to switch to high heat.


Cooked Broccoli
Canned Turkey chili

AMAZING Crock Pot Roast Beef

Taco Salad

1 lb. ground beef, cooked + add taco seasoning and simmer with water until water is cooked down
Diced tomatoes
Chopped lettuce
Black beans, cooked
Shredded cheddar cheese
Sliced Avocado

Mix all ingredients and enjoy!

Please comment with any of YOUR personal favorite sugarless recipes- I'm always looking for new ideas!

Swap and Go!

(If you didn’t read the post “FED UP”check that out first!)

I’m a cold turkey kind of girl. I never see the need to ween myself off of something. If I’m not supposed to have it, then I quit. In October I quit caffeine. I was drinking an iced tea when I decided to quit, so I dumped it out and that was that. When it was time for my babies to quit their binkies, I took them all away- never to be seen again. Years ago when I realized my stomach was not prone to tolerating dairy, I switched to soy and gave up cheese.

After watching Fed Up, I was immediately ready for my family to eliminate sugar, but I’m also frugal. The cold turkey approach didn't work. My advice to anyone wanting to majorly cut back their sugar intake:
  1. Wait until you use up the food currently hanging out in your pantry. I am not a waster, so it took me a couple weeks until the yucky stuff was weeded out.
  2. In the meantime, during your next grocery store visit only purchase the good stuff. Eventually, you’ll weed out all the yucky stuff.
There is no official yucky stuff vs. good stuff list. For me, I try to base my eating habits off what the good Lord has created for us. Keep in mind: I STILL EAT SUGAR! This past weekend we had friends over, I attended a bridal shower, and went to a teen event. Each of these occasions offered sugary treats, so of course I enjoyed some of them! The key for me is to drastically eliminate my sugar intake. Here are some of the tricks I use to do this. We’ll call this Swap and Go!

Instead of drinking sweet tea, soda, juice, or any other sugary drink, swap it with sparkling water. Add a lemon or lime wedge for an extra kick! La Croix is also a great swap. My favorite is the coconut flavor with a lime- a tropical treat! Also, brew your own UNsweet iced tea- it’s super cheap and super easy. Don’t use sugar substitutes. I can’t say this enough: no diet soda, no Splenda, no Sweet and Low, etc. It all turns to sugar, and is bad for the body.

Instead of a granola bars, crackers, cookies, muffins or whatever your normal go-to snack is, swap with nuts! Cashews, almonds, pistachio’s, and sunflower seeds make a great mix. Put them in a zip lock bag, throw them in your purse and they’ll be accessible wherever you go.  Or swap for plain or whole grain rice cakes with some nut butter.

Instead of the insanely-sugary cereals (which is almost ALL cereals- check those sugar labels), swap with PLAIN oatmeal, plus raisins or fresh fruit. It’s really hard to find a sugarless cereal, but plain Cheerios or Cornflakes do have a much lower amount of sugar. I buy a whole grain “Puff Cereal” at our local health food store, and it has zero sugar in it. At first our kids didn’t want to go near these cereals with a 10-foot pole, but now they’re totally fine with it. It took many weeks for them to adjust, but it’s so worth it.

Ditch those yogurt squeezies for kids- they are chocked full of sugar. Swap it with plain yogurt and fresh fruit, or an UNsweet apple sauce squeezie.

Swap out flavored coffee creamer with a small amount of half and half. Add a little almond extract for a yummy aroma!

Instead of baking with white flour and sugar, swap it with Spelt flour and UNsweet applesauce. Chuck makes the most divine homemade, spelt flour and apple sauce fresh bread!

Instead of store-bought, sugary red sauces and salsa’s, swap by making your own sugar-free versions. I promise it’s very easy to do! I do not like cooking or baking, and even I can make these swaps.

The last swap, and one of my favorites, is to give up those nighttime desserts. Instead, use coconut oil and fix some popcorn on the stove top! It takes care of the munchies and tastes really yummy! I am not a popcorn person, but I really enjoy this swap.

So there you have it, some basic Swap and Go’s! Please share any of your own personal Swap and Go’s. I would love to expand my horizons! In the next post, I’ll share some meals ideas for anyone interested.