Monthly Archives: September 2012

On passion. And people.

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Yesterday I asked Pete what he thought was my greatest passion. Without skipping a beat, saying it so matter of fact: People.

Now that right there made my day. First of all, because he knew me so well that he could answer that question before I could. And secondly, because he was right. It wasn’t snowboarding or backpacking or even the outdoors. It wasn’t youth or women or kids, even. It was broader and more accurate. People.

It’s the kids I get to love on at church, the youth I get to engage with through YD Adventures, and the women in my life who push me or get pushed by me to trust and rely more on Christ. It’s my husband and all of the special ways we share our affection. It’s my family and my friends. My coworkers, my housemates. I really just love the heck out of them! All of them.

So what does one do with passion, anyways? What comes to mind is the word, “investment”. It seems to me that if you invest time and resources into your passions, joy will always follow. Because even if the money is lame and your status is less than glamorous, you are nonetheless doing something that makes you feel alive. Something that brings good and not harm. Something that is fruitful and joy-giving.

That, my friend, is one solid investment.

I don’t think I’ll ever look back on my life and wish I hadn’t invested in so many people. (I might even wish I’d have invested in more.) No, I’ll look back and say that was time well spent. It will not matter if it didn’t pay off financially. It will not matter if I made mistakes in the midst of it. It will matter that I did it despite those barriers.

So what is your one unyielding passion? And are you doing it? I determined that my two greatest passions were people and words. Oh how I enjoy writing. Even if it’s a simple blog that I write in my bed at five in the morning. There is no monetary reward in store, here. No pay. But dangit, I’m doing what I love. And that is enough.

Passion… pass it on.

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Mustachio (camp name) introduces us girls to my fave new hairstyle

Cora, my dear darling friend, and I embark on a birthday biking adventure, Portland tram inclusive!

Sam and Micaiah, two lovely volunteer/summer staff at YD Adventures

Enjoying Hazel Barrett, my amazing friend, mentor, and housemate

Precious Kelsey, a YD Adventures student turned friend

Erika, a delightful co-leader on YDAO trips, and an even better friend

Wyatt and Ivy, my new nephew and niece: possibly the sweetest kids on the planet

Numero Uno, himself. My loving, always-makes-me-laugh husband, Pete

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Super Wife conquers Chicken Pot Pie

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My husband is such a kind soul that he puts zero pressure on me to be Super Wife. At times I battle with putting that pressure on myself (like when I return after a week away with YDAO). But he, on the other hand, is just plain content, expectations: nada. The result: more baking and experimenting in the kitchen. More recipes. More apron-wearing. And more messes to clean up. But the best part: more smiles from HoneyDude.

I think I’ve been craving this little life change for some time. I just didn’t know it. So thank you, husband, for being so loving and sweet and wonderful that I want to make chicken pot pie for you. It’s a fun little journey, Mister. xo

Look mom! A pie!

Oh boy, it was too good to be true. Shameless, I know.

Now I’m not really a Martha Stewart or anything. I just try. (Which makes it fun!) And while I can’t say I’ve even tried or enjoyed chicken pot pie much in my life, it was nonetheless beckoning me like a challenge I needed to conquer. So I sought out a recipe and went to work. Straight off a long work trip, and with a day off, Super Wife threw on her apron, determined to make a savory little pie for Hubby.

The final word: Ultra delish. I will definitely make this one again!

   Chicken Pot Pie

    Prep Time: 30 Min | Cook Time: 50 Min | Ready In: 1 Hr, 20 Min

    Ingredients:

  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cubed
  • 1 cup sliced carrots
  • 1 cup frozen green peas
  • 1/2 cup sliced celery
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1 3/4 cups chicken broth
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 2 (9 inch) unbaked pie crusts

    Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C.)
  2. In a saucepan, combine chicken, carrots, peas, and celery. Add water to cover and boil for 15 minutes. Remove from heat, drain and set aside.
  3. In the saucepan over medium heat, cook onions in butter until soft and translucent. Stir in flour, salt, pepper, and celery seed. Slowly stir in chicken broth and milk. Simmer over medium-low heat until thick. Remove from heat and set aside.
  4. Place the chicken mixture in bottom pie crust. Pour hot liquid mixture over. Cover with top crust, seal edges, and cut away excess dough. Make several small slits in the top to allow steam to escape.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until pastry is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.

    Becky tips:

  1. Buy a whole roasted chicken from the deli and shred half for this recipe; save the other half for tomorrow’s dinner
  2. Cook veggies in broth for extra flavor.
  3. Omit celery seed. Who buys that?
  4. Cook onions in olive oil. It’s better for you and just as tasty.
  5. Definitely buy pre-made crusts. Just allow time for them to thaw!
  6. Find this recipe and more on allrecipes.com, my go-to for yummy, tried-and-true recipes with honest reviews.

Four photos. Why I do what I do.

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Rappelling is exciting, scary, and challenging. It involves little more than courage, trust, and faith… plus a reckless abandonment of fear, doubt and worry. //Helping students understand what it means to recklessly trust God in ALL things.

“How am I going to scale this wall… by myself?” he asks. The only way: with help. //Helping students catch the true value of the church, the body of Christ.

Bonding through challenge course… never fails. //Helping students overcome obstacles of love.

Spending time with peers in a healthy atmosphere of trust and fellowship. //Helping students grow in their relationship with Christ, by loving God and others

Huckleberry Heaven

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So I went ahead and went wild in East Glacier Park. I had the most amazing piece of pie. For breakfast.

Homemade huckleberry heaven, right here

But let me tell you. It was worth it. I mean, everything about this huckleberry delight is perfect. The only thing I could have asked for: a bit more whip.

Don’t be fooled by the large sign outside a neighboring cafe, saying “Best Huckleberry Pie”. Go to Luna’s. You will not be sorry. Even if you have pie for breakie.

Seasons of change

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This is my fourth September with YD Adventures. And it’s always the same. I’m exhausted yet excited. Filled up yet drained. Enjoying the calming close of a busy season while sorely dreading its end.

And so the seasons turn.

Actually, my life has largely been seasonal by nature. In my early twenties, I spent three years reaping the benefits of seasonal “foodie” tourism, flip-flopping between restaurants in Glacier National Park or a nearby golf resort and then heading to a slope-side ski resort in the winter. Then college came with its three years of summers “off” followed by the post-graduation spell where I bounced around in my career so much that it almost seemed seasonal.

Then YD came along. And still, seasons of change every year.

I’ve come to appreciate it. A little bit of change goes a long way. Mixes it up a bit, you know?

My crew of college students on the trail

Like clockwork, every August I staff a trip with Warner Pacific College students who venture on an 8-day equipping trip as part of leadership development. I love love love it. First: because there is backpacking involved. Second: because I enjoy engaging with college students’ faith journeys. Third: because backpacking presents countless opportunities for good conversations with the students, and tons of personal quiet time to commune with the Lord. With nothing to distract (assuming one has mastered mosquitoes and blisters) and nowhere to hide, we get a priceless time of intimacy with our Loving heavenly Father as we gawk at His awesome, majestic glory and listen for His voice.

I can’t say it enough: it’s priceless.

Naturally, there has been a running joke that this 2012 trip – my fourth – was my last. This is, of course, because I will have a baby by next August. Like I said, this is a joke. So please don’t think this is a heads-up or anything. Seriously, take those thoughts back.

But the joking does make me think ahead a bit. When will the YD adventuring end for me? And will it be for a single season, or for multiple? Strangely, where once I used to thrive on change, it’s now hard for me to look ahead and see change. [I can’t even believe I’m saying this. I think it’s a sign of maturity. Or maybe it’s just plain getting old and stuck in my ways.]

At the root of all of this is a little thing called fear.  [I recognize this old foe. Such a thief. A thief of joy, peace, hope.] Fear of the unknown… such a classic fear for me. Isn’t that really what all fear boils down to? In our state of uncertainty, it’s the crippling belief that things will not work out. That things will suck. And that life will go to hell in a handbasket real quick.

Let’s just say it, shall we? What a crock of bologne. What a trick that thief plays on us! Time and again, we fall victim of this one. What would it take to believe otherwise? To believe that things will work out just as God planned? That our planning and scheming and dreaming is largely unnecessary and, dare I say it, even damaging?

So when, friends, do we sit back and let God lead, and when do we act? Isn’t that the age-old question? I’ve heard it said that God answers prayers in one of three ways: Yes, no, or wait. Is that all we need to know? Is that the only answer worth pursuing?

Alas, not knowing what lies ahead, I shall wait upon the Lord. I shall listen for His voice. And even when the fear threatens to rob my peace or destroy my dreams, I will strive to be content in this place of waiting. For I know that all of those little details sit comfortably in the Lord’s hands. And He is more than capable, more than faithful, to do immeasurably more than all we could ask or imagine. That is the truth right there. Nothing seasonal about it.

“Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.” Psalm 20:7