Menu Plan Monday, July 21, 2014


MONDAY- Grilled Sausage, fettuccine noodles, corn, cucumber salad

TUESDAY- Crock Pot Messy Max’s (aka – sloppy joe’s)

WEDNESDAY – Mexican Beef Stew & Crackers

THURSDAY – Ravioli Crockpot Casserole

FRIDAY – Taco Truck (one of many in SW Detroit)

SATURDAY – Pasta (made from spiral cut egg plant), grilled Italian sausage

SUNDAY – Grilled Chicken, Grilled Broccoli, Rice

more ideas at OrgJunkie

Hidden Agendas

Ick. Hidden agendas just make me wanna barf. And so many times
people will ask one thing but really be “fishing” for something
else… and think that no one notices. Again… ICK!

But that’s not what I’m referring to in this blog.
The Apostle Paul told the church in Corinth that
sincere love speaks for itself.

“We prove ourselves by our purity, our understanding,
our patience, our kindness,
by the Holy Spirit within us, and by our sincere love.”
2 Corinthians 6:6

In this text the word for “sincere” means
not fake, free from hidden agendas.

“Well, that’s me for sure,” we all say smugly to ourselves.
But, maaaaaaaybe not!

What about the times we’ve gone out of our way for our
neighbor and they politely said, “Thanks,” and shut the door?
(I guess we were expecting a little more, right?)

Or when we sacrificed some serious sleep to bless our family
and they not only didn’t say thank you, but they actually
complained about our kindness?
(Certainly we could have expected a smidgen of praise
or at least a tiny bit of affirmation for our undying sacrifice!)

Or the time we so freely gave up our Saturday afternoon
to help out a stressed friend, but she seemed just as
uptight when we left as when we arrived.
(Surely our most blessed gift of time should’ve brought
about a peaceful gratitude!)

See what I mean?
Proudly we can declare that we give love without expecting
anything in return, but if we’re honest with ourselves
we have to admit that we have expectations…
hidden agendas.

Doing things to merely get my expected response (and warm fuzzy affirmations)
is like posting a selfie… only for SELF!
I must answer to God for MY love…
So, I’m learning to regularly ask myself, “Do I love without hidden agendas?”
Do you?

Menu Plan Monday, July 14, 2014


Lunch- TBA
Dinner- Ham & Cheese Quiche, Fruit

Lunch- PB & J, Carrot sticks
Dinner- Chicken Alfredo, Broccoli

Lunch- Deli Meat Sandwiches, chips, fruit
Dinner- Veggie “Zoodles”, Grilled Chicken

Lunch- Tomato Salad
Dinner- Crock Pot Pork Chops, Green Beans, Rice

Lunch- Black Bean & Corn Salad
Dinner – Homemade Whole Wheat Pizza

Lunch- Do Overs
Dinner- Grilled Sausages & Potatoes, Zucchini

SUNDAY – Zoe’s Bday!!
Lunch- TBA
Dinner – Grilled Chicken, Teriyaki Noodles, Fruit salad, Bday Cake Cups

for more ideas see

Recently Overheard- July 9, 2014

If you were a fly on our wall you would’ve heard this…

“When we were playing super heros, they all went back to the bat cave and Wonder Woman made them all hot chocolate. Well… It was a cold day and they’d been fighting Mr. Freeze.”

“I would give up a thousand video games for more action figures!”

“Heaven must smell like Birthday cake.”

“This new gum is gunma make mouth all stuck up cuz it’s so cool!”

“Look at you, Mom. You’re throwing something away for once!”

Recently Overheard – July 2, 2014

If you’d been at our house lately you would’ve heard this…

“Satan doesn’t work at McDonalds, he works at Burger King!”

While watching USA in the World Cup…
“Goalie Tim Howard deserves an award, or a hug or at least an ice cream cone!”

“If I had a dollar for every time Mom said. ‘Someone kick it’ I’d be rich!”

“Mom passed the test. The test of weirdness.”

“Mom is a kids’ jute box.”

Me, while having a science conversation-
“What do you think of when you hear the word orbit?”
Chase- “Eat. Drink. Chew Orbit!”

Kids 1- “If you had to choose just one store to do all your shopping
for your life what would it be?”
Kid 2- “Sky mall.”

Menu Plan Monday – July 4th week!


I LOVE, LOVE, Love patriotic holidays!
And this week is the Biggy! Yippee!
I wanna add fun food to more than Friday’s menu.

Lunch- Grape Chicken Salad
Dinner- Grilled Pork Chops & Peaches
Broccoli, Grilled Potato Wedges

Lunch- Tomato Salad
(cut cheese into star shapes)
Dinner- Slow Cooker Enchiladas (make extra beans for Friday’s dip)

Lunch- Do-Overs
Dinner-Grilled Sasuages, Zucchini Parmesan Chips ,
Layered Salad, Jello Stars
Treat – Baked Donuts (with berries)

Lunch- Fresh Veggie Plate, PB & J
Dinner- Summer Corn & Tomato Pasta

Brunch – Homemade Baked Berry Donuts
Celebration Meal –
Grilled Hamburgers
Fruit Salad
Sweet Corn with Parmesan
Crockpot Dip
Hershey’s Firecracker Cake
Jolly Rancher Lemonade

Lunch – Scrambled Eggs, Fruit
Dinner- Homemade W.Wheat Veggie Pizza

Lunch- Roast, Potato, Carrots in CrockPot
Dinner- TBA

More ideas at

25 Years – The List

25 Keys to a Joyful and Lasting Marriage
(in no particular order)


One of the keys to our marriage has always been to realize that we’re not experts and that our way may not be best for others. In fact, over the years, we’ve been asked to do “Marriage Retreats” and other types of events and we’ve replied (with a smirk), “One of the secrets to our marriage is not doing marriage retreats!” So, this list is not comprehensive or authoritative. But, rather just a quick, random, spontaneous list from Chilly and me as we sit together in Florida celebrating our FIRST 25 years of marriage… Enjoy!

1. Smile every day — often!
2. Talk (and listen) to God before you talk to each other.
3. Buy good toilet paper and roll it over-the-top.
4. Fight for your ‘sabbath day’ — and make it count.
5. Last one out of bed makes the bed.
6. Say I love you as often as you can! Also, compliment each other. Lots of eye-contact.
7. Don’t discuss important things when you’re overly emotional (angry, sad, depressed, etc).
8. Laugh… A LOT!
9. Don’t compare or compete with each other — revel in uniqueness!
10. Honor one another. Never tease or embarrass the other beyond what’s kind.
11. Live translucent not transparent. Yes, allow others to see inside but not every detail.
12. Live Amenable (even better than accountable).
13. Follow God’s dreams rather than expect Him to follow ours.
14. Make love not war (and everyone just went, “Oooooo!”)
15. Discipline in unity — be on the same team.
16. Be present (alert & responsive) not just around.
17. Take time away from ‘everything’ together and at times, alone.
18. Make sure God remains head of the home & marriage.
19. Don’t make your spouse your only friend — do different things with different people.
20. Live above reproach (opposite sex, computers, free time, interests, etc).
21. In disagreements or decisions, avoid words like: Always and Never.
22. Communicate LOVE the way your spouse needs it not the way you want it.
23. Raise your children as individuals — no two are the same. Enjoy their uniqueness!
24. Seek wisdom from those who have lived it — not just from peers, blogs & books.
25. Don’t think you’re an expert… EVER. Avoid writing lists for the first 25 years!

Hope you’ve enjoyed this little random list. I’m confident that we left out some essential things that may have made you think, “what about this?” — we’re just happy that it’s got you thinking, laughing and reading. We’re SO THANKFUL for our marriage! We’re also thankful for all of you who know us and still love us! Thanks for praying for our marriage and family, for reading our blogs, for sharing in our crazy little world and for living such extraordinary lives. You inspire us and encourage us to FEARLESSLY go for God’s best!

Life, marriage and family are all wonderful ADVENTURES not tedious chores or mindless routines! Your path is planned by God and is filled with unexpected blessings and opportunities. IF you avoid the ordinary, you’ll live the extraordinary! This is our prayer for our lives and YOURS!

Well, it’s back to the beach for us!

CHECK BACK in 25 years for our next list!

More IN Love than EVER,
Chilly and Netta

Menu Plan Monday – June 16, 2014

Menu Plan Monday

Lunch – Scrambled Eggs, Stove Bread, fruit
Dinner- Grilled Steaks, Potatoes, Gr. Beans

Lunch- Sandwiches, Fruit
Dinner- Pasta & Grilled veggies

Lunch- PB & J (celery & PB for me)
Dinner- Tacos

Lunch- Do-Overs
Dinner- Grilled Chicken, Corn Salad

Dinner- Homemade W. Wheat Pizza

Lunch – TBA
Dinner- Chicken & White Bean Soup

Lunch – Lasagna (with veggies all through-out)
Dinner- Cheesy Tortillas, fruit

The “H” Word – 10 years later

I couldn’t get myself to speak the word.
It was what I knew God wanted, but how
in the world could I tell Chilly?

That was ten years ago this month.
We were moving our young
girls to the city of Detroit. (previous post
here) But didn’t God know that the Detroit
City schools were… well… not the best.
Actually they didn’t even fall into anything
close to “Ok.” What is God thinking?

Chilly & I trusted God and of course
He had a plan. NOT the plan I wanted to
hear about, though. NOT at all!!!
For several days I knew that GOD had spoken
to me and instructed us to do the “H” word.
REALLY? “Oh, Lord. We hardly know any
good examples of kids who have been
schooled that way!? Really?”

I couldn’t do it. My mouth wouldn’t
speak the word. But then one night
when the girls were snug in their beds,
Chilly & I sat in the living room; he
turned to me and said it! HE spoke
the “H” word!
“Honey, God wants us to homeschool.”

“I know! Oh… ugh. I know! What in
the world!? What do I do? Where will
I begin? It’s so huge!”

God directs our lives. He calls the shots.
So we said, “Yes!”
Then something insanely crazy happened…
I wanted to to homeschool.
How is this possible?

You know that whole verse about God giving
you the desires of your heart? Well, I
didn’t think this WAS my desire (by any
stretch of the imagination!) But God
knew better. And when we said, “YES”
He changed our hearts! It became thrilling
to think of… scary, but exhilarating!
(That’s how obedience goes… just saying!)

A month later I was spending a few days
with my cousin in Ohio. She had homeschooled
her girls all the way through. They had
college scholarships and are gorgeous,
well-adjusted ladies now. My cousin
poured into me every bit of info
that popped into her head, and I frantically
took crazy-detailed notes. Thank you, Becky!

Later I attended an evening info session
at a local event… scribbling more notes
and then scouring the internet for all
shreds of info available. (There’s wasn’t
as much 10 years ago as there is today!)

With fear, trembling and joy we started
what would become a 10 year journey into the
“H” word… We became a homeschool family.

To be continued…

(If there’s a topic you’d like to
know more about, please let me know.)

Not spoken

It’s often what we stop short of saying that speaks the loudest.

NOT saying something IS saying something.

Be purposeful.
Say those encouraging words.
Don’t assume they got the “gist of what you were saying.”
Be specific.

In order to speak encouragement to others we have to notice them.
Noticing requires listening.
Listening works best with looking.
Looking happens when stop.

Stop thinking about ourselves.
Stop moving.
Stop doing what is self-serving.

Self-serving does NOT encourage.
Purposeful kindness does.

Say those words.
They may be exactly what they needed to hear.

Hebrews 3:13
“But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today…”