Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Bucket List 2024

January is nearly over and I'm just now getting around to making out my bucket list for 2024. I may add more to it later, but here's what I've come up with so far...

Bucket List 2024

- Purpose to sow daily towards gaining greater health in every area (spirit and soul and body - I Thessalonians 5:23; prosper and be in health - 3 John 2)
- Remain faithful to daily scripture reading and Bible study
- Focus on simple and nutritious foods
- Get in 30 minutes of exercise, at least, five days per week (walking, hiking, dancing, yard work, etc.) 
- Post my weekly master to-do list and menu plan here on the blog
- Welcome two new grandbabies into the family
- Read 24 books
- Witness the total eclipse of the sun on April 8th
- Attend Spring Training 2024 @ Roaring River State Park
- Visit Cape Girardeau, Missouri and explore the Mississippi River in the that part of the state
- Visit at least two new-to-me state parks
- Hike a new-to-me trail
- Celebrate my 63rd birthday
- Lose 24 pounds
- Vote in the November election
- Get the north shed cleaned out, repaired, and organized
- Have the front porch rebuilt

That's what's on my bucket list this year. What's on yours?

Until next time...

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Monday, January 29, 2024

Master To-Do List and Menu Plan Monday - January 29, 2024

It's the last Monday of January and, after a week of continuous fog and cloudy skies, it's 46 degrees and the sun is shining (we're supposed to have a high near 60!). I'll be checking the yard in hopes of finding crocuses in bloom before week's end!

Last week turned out to be more productive than usual. In addition to getting everything on last week's master to-do list done, I finally got around to deep-cleaning the bedroom, bathroom, and hallway AND, on Friday, after being at the shop for almost a month (for a super big job!!!), I got word that my van was done. Amber was able to take me down to get it and, while there, we had lunch. Then, I went grocery shopping...which I also hadn't done in almost a month. Friday was a great day!

I'm short on time this morning, so I'm going to head right on into this week's post. Join me, won't you?

A Friend's Horses Yesterday Afternoon

This week's master to-do list...

- Clean house
- Do laundry
- Figure February budget and pay bills
- Go to the bank and post office
- Get together with Amanda to plan a couple of upcoming events
- Work

Bison @ Work

This week's menu plan...

Monday - Tacos
Tuesday - Chicken Chowder Soup and homemade rolls
Wednesday - Lasagna (freezer) with peas and breadsticks
Thursday - Stuffed pepper casserole (freezer) with brussel sprouts and cornbread (freezer)
Friday - Fish sandwich with oven fries
Saturday - Turkey burger and baked potato
Sunday - Leftovers

Well, that's it for today! I hope you're having a beautiful Monday and that your week is off to a great start!

Until next time...

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Friday, January 26, 2024

More Than Conquerors

I've been struggling in multiple areas lately but, in the midst of it all, the Lord has made it abundantly clear that He sees my struggles and that He knows and cares. 

This morning's Bible study led me to Romans 8 and I felt led to share some of my study with you. I hope it ministers to someone who is reading this today.

Romans 8:31-39

31 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us who can be against us? 
32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? 
33 Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth: 
34 Who is he that condemeth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. 
35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 
36 As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. 
37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. 
38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 
39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."


The adversities listed by the apostle in verses 35 and 36 have been the experience of the people of God in all generations. Believers should not think it strange if they experience trouble, persecution, hunger, poverty, or anger. Trouble and calamity do not necessarily mean that God has deserted us, nor that He has stopped loving us. On the contrary, our suffering as believers will open up the means by which we experience more of God's love and comfort. Paul assures us that in all these adversities we will overcome and be more than conquerors through Christ.

"More than conquerors" - The entire phrase "we are more than conquerors" is one word in the Greek, hupernikomen. In the entire New Testament, this compound word only occurs here; huper means "over, above" (Latin, "super"), and nikomen (from nikao, "to conquer") means "victors, conquerors." Thus Paul is literally saying that instead of believers being "victims" in a fallen world, in Christ we are "over and above victors" (super-victors); instead of barely getting by in life's difficult experiences, in and through Christ we are "overwhelmingly conquerors." Jesus gained the decisiver victory "for us" at the cross! Because of His victory and the power or the Holy Spirit within us, we are empowered to be "more than conquerors" in our struggles of life.

Footnotes taken from Life in the Spirit Study Bible - King James Version - Copyright 1992 - Thomas Nelson

Until next time...

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Monday, January 22, 2024

Master To-Do List and Menu Plan Monday - Januarry 22, 2024

Another week has passed and here we are...back around to Monday again!

Last week was absolutely frigid (temperatures below zero with windchills as low as -25); this morning...freezing rain...BUT...it's supposed to warm up considerably and not be too bad over the next week or so. I'm thankful!

Due to circumstances beyond mycontrol, very little of what was on my to-do list last week was actually accomplished. I didn't make it to the grocery store, no deep-cleaning was done, the library was closed, so the program that I was supposed to present on Tuesday was canceled, and it will probably be another week or two before I get my van back...so we'll see how this week goes. I'm not planning a lot. 

Let's get started...shall we?

This week's master 'to-do' list...

- Clean house
- Do laundry
- Clean fridge
- Clean and defrost fridge freezer
- Clean and defrost deep-freeze
- Grocery shop
- Have breakfast with Angie
- Solidify the 2024 program schedule (work programs)
- Work

This week's menu plan...

Monday - Tuna patties, canned potatoes, fried cabbage, and corn-on-the-cob
Tuesday - Broiled salmon and mashed potatoes with oven-roasted carrots
Wednesday - Homemade pizza (freezer)
Thursday - Turkey burger and oven fries
Friday - Oven-roasted chicken with baked potato and oven-roasted carrots
Saturday - Breakfast for supper
Sunday - Leftovers

Well, that's it for today! Have a nice day and a great week ahead!

Until next time...

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Wednesday, January 17, 2024

23 Things in 2023 Update


1. Purpose to sow daily towards gaining greater health in every area (spirit and soul and body - I Thessalonians 5:23; prosper and be in health - 3 John 2).

I struggled at times, of course, but, overall, I did fairly well maintaining my focus...especially during the second half of the year.

2. Keep up with scripture reading and daily Bible study. 

Am learning to make this a top priority daily. 

3. Read 12 new books. (I wanted to say 23, but I know me. I'll be doing good if I read 12.)

✅ I surprised myself! I ended up reading 24 books in 2023!!! 

4. Focus on simple and nutritious foods. 

For the most part anyway.

5. Get 30 minutes of physical activity in, at least, five days a week (walking, hiking, dancing, gardening, yard work, etc.).

I did well most of the year, but really slacked off towards the end of the year...November and December. 

6. Lose at least 23 pounds.

Goal accomplished, but I gained a few pounds back over the holidays. It's time to get back on track and keep going.

7. Post my weekly master to-do list and menu plan here on the blog.

Unfortunately, I failed to keep up with the weekly planning posts in 2023 as well as I have in years' past. I worked more hours than usual. and had other stuff going on, so just didn't keep like I should have. I hate that as this blog serves as a diary of sorts for myself and my family. I will try to be more consistent in 2024.

8. Practice hospitality by inviting family members and friends in to share a meal at least once a month.

I didn't purposefully keep track, but, yes, I'm sure that this one was easily accomplished.

9. Welcome a new grandbaby into the family.

In 2023 our family welcomed two new babies...granddaughter, Sophia, and my first great-grandson, Cooper. Both are absolutely darling and I love them both!

10. Save money by using up gift bags, tissue paper, wrapping paper, gift tags, and cards on-hand instead of buying more. 

I ended up buying a few things here and there, but, overall, did well with using items on-hand. Will continue this practice in 2024, as there is still much to be used.

11. Deep-clean, declutter, and organize every room in my home. (I think this going to have to be an annual, or semi-annual, event every year. There's just too much clutter!) 

I didn't deep clean every room as I had hoped to, but I sure did do a lot of decluttering and organizing. I plan to continue the process in 2024.

12. Visit Hannibal, Missouri and take a riverboat cruise on the Mississippi River.


13. Visit the Steamboat Arabia Museum in Kansas City, Missouri. (We visited several years ago, but I want to revisit with fresh eyes and armed with more information.)

14. Visit Fort Rock Family Camp in Arkansas...either as a registered guest or maybe as a voluteer.

I did make it down briefly (one day trip) and got in a nice visit with my friend, Roxanne.

15. Create and keep a new nature journal.

16. Get the north shed cleaned out, repaired, and organized into a storage shed.

17. Redo the front porch.

18. Paint and hide rocks with the grands.


19. Log at least 12 new geocache locations.

20. Explore a new-to-me trail.  

21. Visit at least one Missouri state park that I've never visited before. 

✅ I ended up visiting, at least, eight new-to-me state parks.

22. Visit Bass Pro and Wonders of Wildlife in Springfield at Christmastime.

That's how I did with my 2023 bucket list. Did you have a 2023 bucket list? If so, how did you do with yours? 

Until next time...

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Monday, January 15, 2024

Master To-Do List and Menu Plan Monday - January 16, 2024

It's Monday morning and here in southwest Missouri we're in the deep-freeze! It's -2 with a windchill of -10, which is better than it was yesterday (-6 with a windchill of -25) and there is snow on the ground. What's the weather like where you're at?

For Christmas granddaughter, Alysia, gave me a cookie mix-in-a-jar gift. I whipped the 'whole grain chippers' up last night (quick and easy!) and am enjoying a couple with a cuppa hot tay this morning.

Whole Grain Chippers

The cookies are quite tasty and full of all kinds of good things including sunflower seeds! I will get the original recipe from Amanda and share it here in future.

How was your week and weekend? Mine here were good!

I got a great deal of cleaning, sorting, and organizing done on the homefront last week and worked at the park Friday and Saturday. 

I presented a program on 'Animals in Winter' on Friday. Due to the weather (super cold and very windy) only a handful of participants showed up, but we had a good time.

It was extremely cold on Saturday, but I was the only one working and it was glorious! The wind had calmed considerably and the sun was shining. 

Tallgrass Prairie Sunrise on a Frosty Morn

I saw bison coming and going...

Bison Silhouetted Agains Morning Sky

Winter Grass Against a Backdrop of Grazing Bison

...and there were frost flowers!

It was such a good day!!!

After church on Sunday I enjoyed a quiet afternoon with family, rested, and read. It was a nice weekend all the way around.

Now, here it is...Monday morning and the start of brand new week! Let's get started on today's post, shall we?

This week's master to-do list...

- Clean house
- Do laundry
- Deep clean bedroom, hallway, and bathroom
- Get a couple of small home maintenance projects done (not sure which ones yet...need to make a list and pick one or two for the week)
- Present a library program on animal tracks
- Shop for groceries
- Work on craft projects for Christmas
- Read
- Hopefully get my van back (it's been out of commision for almost a month now and in the shop since January 1st) 
- Work

This week's menu plan...

- Monday - Tortellini With Creamy Tomato Sauce and homemade French bread
- Tuesday - Broiled Salmon, mashed potatoes, corn on the cob, and peas
- Wednesday - Broccoli cheese and rice casserole
- Thursday - Turkey burger and oven fries
- Friday - Homemade pizza
- Saturday - Breakfast for supper
- Sunday - Leftovers

Well, that's it for today! I hope you and yours are healthy, happy, and snug as a bug in a rug...especially if you're in an area that is experiencing extremely cold temperatures.

Until next time...

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Monday, January 8, 2024

Master To-Do List and Menu Plan Monday - January 8, 2024

It's a rainy Monday here in southwest Missouri. According to the forecast it's supposed to rain all day and all night, then transition over to snow by morning. How much we'll get depends on where the storm system tracks.

(Um...I think they missed it! I finished writing this post, looked out, and the rain had already transitioned! It's snowing to beat the band...great, big, fluffy, white flakes! My yard is already covered! Wow!!!) 

 Taken Just Now - WOW!!!

I've missed a few Monday posts recently, but am eager to get back on track...with everything! How was your weekend?

My weekend here was good. I worked Saturday, spent time with Amber and the girls that evening, enjoyed fellowship with family and friends Sunday morning, and had a quiet time of rest and relaxation Sunday afternoon. I truly enjoyed the first weekend of 2024!

Pretty Cup and Glass Teapot 
(Both gifts from previous Christmases)

I didn't make any New Year's resolutions this year. First of all, because I didn't even think about making any until just now and, secondly, they never work out anyway. I do have things I want to work on, though, and will share about those throughout the coming days and weeks. 

How about you? Did you make any New Year's resolutions this year? Let's get right on into this week's post now, shall we?

My First Experience With Diamond Painting
Bison (of course!)

This week's master to-do list...

- Clean house
- Do laundry
- Sort through at least two boxes of miscellaneous stuff that's been packed away (keep, toss, donate)
- Read
- Start a new craft project
- Wish youngest son and daughter-in-law, James and Nicole, a happy anniversary 
- Celebrate daughter, Amanda, and daughter-in-law, Nicole, as they celebrate birthdays this week
- Work
- Present a program on 'Animals in Winter'

AI Art That I've Been Playing With

This week's menu plan...

It's time to clean out the fridge, close my eyes and toss the leftover holiday goodies, take a food inventory, and get back on track in every area, including diet and exercise. 

I have an abundance of fresh foods and jarred and sealed soups that need used. I will focus on using those items up this week. 

Monday - Chicken Italian sausage with oven-roasted potatoes and fried cabbage
Tuesday - Chicken fajitas with rice and beans
Wednesday - Soup and sandwich
Thursday - Turkey burger and oven fries
Friday - Soup and crackers
Saturday - Homemade pizza
Sunday - Leftovers

Well, that's all for today! I hope your Monday is going well and that you have a great week ahead! 

Until next time...

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Sunday, January 7, 2024

Getting Back in the Groove

I've been out the loop so long that there's no point in even trying to catch up. 

I will say that I had an absolutely lovely holiday season. It seemed like one long continuous Christmas extravaganza starting with Family Christmas on December 9th and carrying right on through and into the New Year. 

So many good times were shared with family and friends and, in the midst of it, I don't think I posted a single picture on this blog to look back on. I am posting a few throughout this post. 

At the end of the holiday seaon I was exhausted...extremely blessed, but totally exhausted! I'm just now getting rested up and finding my way back into a pattern of some sort of normalcy.

I got the last of the Christmas decorations put away on Friday...that is...except for the single strings of lights that I'm leaving up in the kitchen, livingroom, and bedroom. I'm not quite ready to do away with their brightness and color yet!

Well, it's getting late. I just wanted to drop in and say something...ANYTHING! I've missed visiting with you.

I've got so much on my heart and mind. There are so many things going on and there's much to do. At present I'm just trying to get myself settled down, sorted out, and back in the groove. I will be with you again soon!

Until then...

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