Packages in the mail

Over the last few weeks, I’ve had a few packages arrive I’m the mail.

Shoes… dresses… shoes…

and now this:

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Talk about exciting!

This is the real love story of Pioneer Woman and Marlboro Man – how her life was tipped upside down when she went from a black heel-wearing slick L.A. lawyer to tractor wheels as a farmer’s wife in Oklahoma. If you don’t have a clue who these people are and what I’m talking about, you need to check out her blog.

PW’s love story has been signed to be made into a feature film and Reese Witherspoon has been asked to play Ree. I read the first 40-odd pages back last year which is available on her blog, and I couldn’t put it down. That girl has talent – she will suck you into her world and will have you laughing and crying at the same time.

This is in perfect timing for our Western Australian adventure beginning in the morning.

Wednesday Words to Live By – Psalms 37:7

I love the Book of Psalms.

I heard a great preacher once say “If in doubt… go to Psalms.”

King David has filled it with praise, honor and worship to God.

It is also a good book to read when you don’t know what to say to God. Do you ever have those moments when you want to pray, but don’t have any words?

This past week I’ve particularly loved reading Psalms 25-27 – but below is a great verse as well.

Happy Wednesday :)

*Photo found here

Happy B’day Mark Aitken

My mate Mark and I have been friends since we were 10 or 11. It’s a while now… like 20 years.

Woahwah… that’s crept up on us.

Today is his 31st B’day. Happy B’day Schmark!

I could have chosen a sweet picture of us on the Kokoda trail, or at the summit of Mt Everest, or an old photo on a Pathfinder Camp when he use to sing soprano. But, I have chosen the video below for your viewing pleasure.

We recorded it one night at the orphanage in Cambodia where we, and our church youth group, spent 2-3 weeks in 2007/2008 volunteering (was it? My dates are all over the place…). As you will note at the beginning, it was originally made for his Dad, Gerald, who used to build the bush dunny’s on our Pathfinder camps at Barrington Tops.

Ahhh the old days camping with the Aitkens. There were no better Pathfinder Leaders than them.

Happy B’day Clare Salke

A few years ago… ok, like 7-8 years ago, I went on a little adventure with some of my best mates to climb Mt Everest in Nepal.

This was one of those trips that could have broken our mateship altogether or really strengthen it forever. Thank the Lord, it was the latter!

Above is a photo of the Neppers Crew: Clare Bear, Janny, Marko and I circa 2004.

Today, we want to send out a big shout out to Clare for her 29th.

We love you Bear!

What did you have for lunch today?

Gotta love lunchtime! It quite possibly could be my favorite time of day.

This is what I had…

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This is as healthy as it gets my friends.  It turned out to be fat-free (cept for the olive oil, but that’s good for you) sugar-free, dairy-free, gluten-free and meat free. The best bit though, was that it was packed with flavour. Check out the cooked quinoa below… my friend Georgia thinks that it looks like worms. :)

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If you want to get some great new ideas for vegan recipes, you need to visit my legendary friend Linzo’s blog Eats: roots & leaves.

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Tadaaaaaa… It was awesome.

Here’s the recipe:

1. Chuck pumpkin, zucchini, carrots plus a can of beetroot onto a baking tray and bake till they look “well-done”.

2. Add broccoli, green beans, tomato as fresh ingredients and stir into the baked ingredients once they have cooled.

3. Boil 1 part quinoa to 3 parts water then let it simmer (with lid) for 15 mins. Then fluff it. If you don’t know what this means, ask your mum how you fluff cous cous.

4. Use olive oil and salt & pepper to season.

Boom.

Update – VP thinks you should only use 2 parts water to 1 part quinoa and thats why it doesn’t look fluffy in the photo. I followed the instructions on the packet, but she could quite well be right.

Kate’s Dress and a day at Buckingham Palace

After all the reports over the last few days about the Summer exhibit and how many people have visited, and are expected to visit before it closes in October, I figured it was time to write my post on our latest visit to Buckingham Palace.

So do you remember how excited our household was over the royal wedding held earlier in the year? Just in case you have forgotten, you can read about it all here: There’s going to be a royal wedding!, Who’s excited people???, Royal Wedding Wrap-up

When we planned the European Adventure, I had told Richie that I didn’t care where we went or what we did, I just wanted to go visit Buckingham Palace, do the tour and see the dress. You may think, argh, that’s boring! BUT let me tell you it was ridiculously AMAZING!

“Smile, we’re off to see the Queen!”

“No we’re not. She’s not here… She’s at Balmoral!”

The Summer exhibit at Buckingham Palace included the tour of the state rooms, a side exhibit of the Faberge stuff the royal family own (uber boring) and the exhibit of the dress including video interviews and explanations from Sarah Burton. The Pye/Reid contingency was so engrossed in the tour that we lost each other along the way and met outside on the street after.

*Photo found here - Yep walked here.

*Photo found here – Yep, saw this stuff too. I love how intrigued Kate is here. Reality is the Faberge exhibit was ridiculously boring. Her dress was what everyone was dying to see!

*Photo found here - Yep, we stood here. It was awesome.

My favourite memories of the exhibit were finding dirt marks on the wedding dress (underneath the skirt which dragged along – we all have this on our wedding dresses…), discovering that Kate wears size 7 shoes (I had an “Oh My goodness Kate and I wear the same size shoe!” moment – the fact that size 7 is prob the average shoe size for women didn’t come into my thinking at all…) and seeing Wills and Kate deep cut in the (REAL!) wedding cake. To see her dress up close was just incredible.

Afterwards, I ended up having a coffee and a vanilla slice in the Garden Cafe out the back with me, myself and I. We had a fabulous time, thanks for asking.

Isn’t it cute?

If you have a chance to see this before it closes on October 3 this year – then go! It is totally worth the 17.50 pound we paid.

Hot tip: book online and make sure you go to the loo before hand, because the Queen doesn’t let you use her loo.

Wednesday Words to Live By – Ecclesiastes 3:13

Yes Wednesday Words is a day late. But not for people in the US of A! :)

A few days ago I was reading over Ecclesiastes, chapter 3 and this morning while flicking around on Pinterest, I saw this picture.

Had to share it and claim it to be our Wednesday Words for the week.

Winner!

*Photo found at Happenstance

Spectacular Sabbath Day

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After one of the best sermons I’ve heard all year at church, I came home and snoozed in Nona’s recliner. In fact, I stayed there all afternoon. The warmth of the sun made it very easy. You see, I really wasn’t feeling the greatest after church but the weather and the view out to our un-kept garden, made the rest of the day spectacular.

David Weslake preached at Churchside today and he had me in tears. I came home wrecked, but in a good way. He really challenged me to think outside the box and reassess how I pray for people in my life. The best way Richie and I could describe the content of his sermon was that it was all “meat”. If you want to know what we mean by “meat” go look up 1 Corinthians 3:2.

I’m so grateful for Sabbath where I can sit in the sun and just relax. What a blessing.

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Way Beyond Myself

It’s Friday Friday, gotta get down on Friday!

Thankfully Rebecca Black wasn’t the first song I listened to in the car on the way to work today, but the below was which I totally thought was AWESOME!

Have you heard it?

I hadn’t until this morning. I “Shazamed” it at a red light and boom, I found out it was by Newsboys!

So here’s to Thank(ing) God it’s Friday!

Hello!

I’ve been thinking it’s about time
To win the war that fights against all the lies invading my mind
You have brought me to my senses
Even though You built this world to shake
You still love me in a personal way
So I think it’s time to leave my doubt behind

There’s so much more than meets the eye
Or what’s going on inside
I believe in something way beyond myself
Like the wind that moves the leaves
Lord, You move me to my knees
I believe in something way beyond myself

Oh the way we build our empires hoping to impress our friends
We’ve forgotten how to inspire those who fall to rise again
Oh my God, You’ve built this world to shake
You still love me in a personal way
So I think it’s time to leave my doubt behind

Storms are gonna come my way, I know
Some things are out of our control but there’s a hope beyond myself
It’s You and You will never let me go
Now I want my life to show You got me thinking beyond myself
Way beyond myself

There’s so much more than meets the eye
Or what’s going on inside
I believe in something way beyond myself
Like the wind that moves the leaves
Lord, You move me to my knees
I believe in something way beyond myself

Album: Born Again Songwriters: Wes Campbell; Seth Mosley; Juan Otero; Michael Tait

Spring is here!!!

Can you believe SPRING has arrived?!?

And we are lovin it!

Can’t wait to finish (we started last weekend!) our spring cleaning and total garden overhaul this weekend. I think people who passed by our home thought it was a derelict. Now there is new life in the garden and the inside is looking immaculate. Just don’t look in the laundry room, spare bedroom or Richie’s study :)

Anyone else enjoy spring cleaning?

*Photo via here