The Grow-Up Plan: Allowing More of God and Less of You

grow-up plan

I love the Lord.   I love learning increasingly more about His Word and through it, His will for my life.   But I have to confess something.   As a home educator, I have often struggled with the correct placement, so to speak, of the Bible as a part of our educational process.  Over the years, I have seen the full gamut of how to use the Bible in children’s education.   I know parents who only use a Bible; the Bible is literature, history, and science within their homes.   On the other side of the spectrum, in my opinion, is the school of thought that studies the Bible as a comparative element in a full study of major religions.   This path, … [Read more...]

18 Fabulous Ways to Use Your Apples this Fall

apple roundup

I don't know about you but I love Fall. As a Texas gal I never had the opportunity to see it as those who lived north of us did. In my area things went from green to brown with no seasons between summer and winter. When my husband was stationed in Nebraska it was like we'd moved into another world. Four seasons, and Fall became a close second favorite to summer. (Yep, I still love the Texas heat!) The first Fall here was breathtaking. The colors, the smells... and the apples. For the first time in my entire life I went apple-picking. Now it's a Fall tradition! So, what should we do with all those apples this year? Here's a few fabulous … [Read more...]

Seven Ways to Whet your Appetite for God’s Word


Sweet. But not just sweet; rich, luscious. It was like the best of honey and spices all mixed together and melted on my tongue with a velvety texture. I bent down to pick up more, for it was thick on the ground. I smashed a handful between my palms and it stuck together, forming a flat round molded to the creases and lines of my hand. "What is it?" I took another bite and closed my eyes to savor; it was warm as sunshine and smooth as fresh butter sliding down my throat. Every other food was forever ruined for me. Nothing else would ever satisfy. That is a snippet my first book Counted with the Stars (which takes place during the … [Read more...]

Celebrate Life


  I love to throw a good birthday party.  In fact some of my parties are still talked about and reminisced today.  I think my desire to throw elaborate parties stems from my birthday being around or on a major holiday.  It is really hard to get a birthday party together with your friends when everyone is out of town. I believe that everyone wants something good to look forward to that is why we have so many holidays on the calendar.  I am not sure where some of them came from like sweetest day.  I have heard it is a Hallmark holiday.  The idea of celebrating is not a new concept. Did you know that the Bible tells us to … [Read more...]

Quinoa Caprese Salad

Quinoa Caprese Salad

I envision the scene like this… Me, walking into a room that has a dozen or so chairs arranged in a circle…I sit in one and, when prompted, introduce myself:  “Hi.  My name is Melissa and I like to tweak recipes.” The occupants of the other chairs reply in return, “Hi, Melissa!”.  And thus, begins my journey. I know recipe tweaking isn’t a real problem;  I have a brother with serious addictions so I get it, trust me.  But, having said that, if you asked my family if recipe tweaking sometimes frustrated them, they would reply with a resounding, “YES!”.  Why?  Because I never seem to make the “same” dish  twice.  Oh sure, I’ll call it … [Read more...]

Outdoor Entertaining: DIY Card Table & Patio Curtains


August is when we spend a lot of time entertaining.  Which is pretty silly considering it's the hottest part of summer here in west Texas.  But the end of a season means squeezing in as much as we can before the start of another.  So with friends and family coming over I decided to make a quick repair to an old card table and add some shade to our back patio. This 20-year old card table has seen a lot of parties, crafts and garage sales.  Because of it, the vinyl cover has some pretty serious worn spots on it, notable along the edges.  I normally toss a tablecloth over it, but with our unnaturally strong winds we always have to tie or weigh … [Read more...]

Pink Does Not Define Me.


Last year I was diagnosed with breast cancer.  It seemed my world then turned pink.  It was before breast cancer awareness month; therefore the stores were packed with all things pink. This is NOT who I am though!!  I have had breast cancer but I am NOT this disease. This is who I am. I AM a child of God.  My faith is what gave me strength to get up and face the hardest days of my life.  I sought God’s protection against all the side effects.  I asked forgiveness when the loss of my hair seemed more important than being spared my life.  I shouted for God’s glory when I came out on the other side of treatment fairly unscathed. I AM … [Read more...]