Thanksgiving Fix’ins 2015

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Thanksgiving Table 2013
Thanksgiving Day is just two days away and I must admit my kitchen is clean and there isn’t a turkey or a fixin’ in sight.

BTW – “Fixin” is a southern slang most often used in the phrase “fixin’ to” meaning: about to, getting ready to.  I didn’t do “fixins” until moving to the southern part of the USA 11 years ago.  The Urban Dictionary (yes, surprise, we have such a thing) says:

A Southern (USA) word for the supplemental food, dishes, ingredients, and accompaniments to whatever you are eating, cooking, or serving.

A hamburger can have fixins (tomatoes, pickles, ketchup), barbecued meat can have fixins (baked beans, cole slaw, potato salad), and even fixins can have fixins (baked beans made with added bacon, toppings for a baked potato).

For Thanksgiving dinner we had turkey with all the fixins–cranberry sauce, green beans, wild rice, sweet potatoes.

Okay, that is quite enough about fixins.  Long story short my traveling husband, sous-chef dish-washing mom and I drove a few miles south of Tennessee to Callaway Gardens to spend the week. We are reading, writing, hiking and …. eating.  I’m not cooking this week, but we surely are eating.  We came to see the spectacular Fantasy In Lights set up throughout the garden and to do a bit of hiking.

Fantasy In Lights
The garden is lit up with 8,000,000 (that’s MILLION) lights and it truly is magical.  Last night the air was cold, but we bundled-up and snuggled together as Christmas music played throughout the tour.  We sang Christmas jingles and ended with a melody of about 6 Christmas hymns.
American Beech Tree Lit Up
As we rounded a corner and came out of the forest our guide directed us to this view.  It is a stunning American Beech tree totally lit up with a reflection in the lake.
American Beech Tree Blur!

I was fumbling fast to get my camera and sadly this is the fumbled result!

My devotional time this week is  full of encouraging scripture pointing the way to give thanks to God no matter our circumstance.  From 1 Thessalonians:
The words from Habakkuk have been rattling around in my head this week.  From the sermon, I heard on Sunday at the Ida Cason Callaway Memorial Chapel comes this scripture:

Habakkuk Rejoices in the Lord

Though the fig tree should not blossom,
    nor fruit be on the vines,
the produce of the olive fail
    and the fields yield no food,
the flock be cut off from the fold
    and there be no herd in the stalls,
 yet I will rejoice in the Lord;
    I will take joy in the God of my salvation.

Habakkuk 3:17-18

Ida Cason Callaway Memorial Chapel Stone Alter
Ida Cason Callaway Memorial Chapel Stone Alter

The Book of Habakkuk is the eighth book of the 12 minor prophets of the Hebrew Bible. It is attributed to the prophet Habakkuk and was probably composed in the late 7th century BC.  The words of the prophet Habakkuk ring very true for us today.  He was saying it doesn’t matter if the crops fail, the food is scarce, and the animals gone he will still praise the Lord.  This is the truth of giving thanks to God.

I am a very visual person.  When I read or hear words spoken they immediately take hold in picture form in my mind’s eye.  This week from Sarah Young wrote this in Jesus Calling.

Lacock Abbey Hallway
“A THANKFUL ATTITUDE opens windows of heaven. Spiritual blessings fall freely onto you through those openings into eternity. Moreover, as you look up with a grateful heart, you get glimpses of Glory through those windows. You cannot yet live in heaven, but you can experience foretastes of your ultimate home.” 

Later she writes as if Jesus is speaking directly to us.

“A thankful mind-set does not entail a denial of reality with its plethora of problems. Instead, it rejoices in Me, your Savior, in the midst of trials and tribulations. I am your refuge and strength, an ever-present and well-proved help in trouble.”

Exodus 15:2
The LORD is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation. He is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him.

Cason Callaway Memorial Chapel Stainglass_edited-1
150 Scriptures to Praise God
 (Click or click picture)
From the Jones United Methodist Memorial Church internet website, I found this compilation of praise scriptures.  It is a PDF and you can print it and read often to help you turn your eyes to Jesus in praise and prayer, even when … I dare say especially when you don’t feel like it.  The thankfulness you give to God will take the pain and sting out of the trials and adversity you may find yourself going through.

No matter what your Thanksgiving Day activities this year, it is my prayer that all will take the time to GIVE THANKS to our Lord and Provider,  Creator and one true God, Yahweh.

With a grateful heart, Happy Thanksgiving!

Blasts from the past some of my favorite holiday dishes. (Click on the picture and it will take you to the recipe link.)

Brined Turkey BBQ

Tabled Sweet Potato Casserole

make ahead potatoes

Mixed Veggie Casserole
Mixed Veggie Casserole
My Yankee Dinner rolls
My Yankee Dinner Rolls

 Upclose sweet potato pie single

Pecan Caramel Pie w/tea

Happy Thanksgiving!

Let Us Give Thanks

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Falls Creek Lake, Georgia
Falls Creek Lake, Georgia

This morning I was blessed to be able to attend church service in the Ida Cason Callaway Memorial Chapel at Callaway Gardens, Georgia.

Ida Cason Callaway Chapel
Ida Cason Callaway Chapel

This stunning, small, intimate chapel is nestled among the pine trees surrounding Falls Creek Lake with Callaway Gardens at Pine Mountain, Georgia.  As we drove the windy road through the gardens to the chapel we had no idea what blessing lay ahead. But wait there’s more! Click to continue reading

Ham Salad Appetizers or Sandwiches, You Choose

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I am posting this recipe for ham salad the week before Thanksgiving because you are going to need it soon.  Many of you bake up a big o’ turkey for Thanksgiving but then have a bit of ham on the side for those who don’t want turkey. (I know, but there really are people who don’t like turkey.)

I always buy Kentucky Legend Ham.  They should be sponsoring this post, but sadly they are not.  None-the-less I had a pound of ham leftover from cooking up this outstanding soup of Ham, Potato, and Corn Chowder.

But wait there’s more! Click to continue reading

His Sun Rises On Good and On Evil

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This morning as I opened my daily devotional I found this scripture.  Matthew 5,6, and 7 is known as The Sermon on the Mount and this line of scripture is plucked from an area under the subtitle of Love Your Enemies. What a timely message in light of all the evil being brought throughout our world today.

In His Sermon on the Mount, Jesus tells us that God is gracious to all humanity.  We don’t have to watch more than a few minutes of any 24-hour news channel day or night to wonder how God is gracious to any of us.  But I wonder that from my human perspective.

From God’s perspective, He wants every one of His creation to spend eternity with Him.  Everyone.  Not just the “good” ones, the pretty ones, the nice ones, but everyone.  What a picture of His grace.

Isaiah 41:10

So do not fear, for I am with you;
    do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
    I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Fear not.  He’s got this.  We can trust Him.

1 Thessalonians 5:18
 “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

Today I choose to fear not. Today I choose to give thanks.

French novelist Alphonse Karr wrote, “Some people are always grumbling because roses have thorns; I am thankful that thorns have roses.”

My prayer for you today is that you will focus on the roses in your life. Give thanks to God in all circumstances and watch Him pour out His love, mercy, grace and understanding on you. If you have a hard time finding a reason to thank Him, then ask Him to show you how to be thankful. He will.

God Bless You All,

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