Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Broccoli Tortellini Salad

Here is another family favorite. The recipe comes from my Mom. This salad is easy to prepare and perfect for taking to potlucks. It saves well and you can eat it for a couple of days...... if there are any leftovers!

Ingredients are simple, a head of broccoli, mayonnaise, red onion, shelled sunflower seeds, golden raisins, bacon, tortellini, sugar, and cider vinegar. 

Mix 1/2 cup mayonnaise, 1/2 cup sugar, and 2 tsp. cider vinegar. Set aside.

Rinse and chop one head of broccoli into small pieces.

Add to large bowl.

Finely chop one red onion and add to bowl.

Add one cup golden raisins and one cup shelled sunflower seeds to bowl.

Slice 1lb. of bacon into 1/2 inch pieces. I think it is easier to slices the bacon before you fry it, but if you prefer to fry whole pieces, feel free. Okay, I confess the recipe really calls for 6 slices.

Pour your package of frozen tortellini into a large pot of boiling water. when they are cooked, they will float, usually 2-5 minutes, just wait for them to float.

Stir the bacon periodically as it cooks in a large skillet.

Is there anything quite as wonderful as bacon? You will be glad you used the whole package, because about now people come by and start snitching pieces.

Drain the grease and blot excess grease from the bacon with paper towels.

Add the bacon to the bowl. Here we have the bacon, broccoli, golden raisins, sunflower seeds, and red onion,

Add the drained tortellini and the mayo salad dressing you set aside earlier and mix thoroughly.

Enjoy this bowl of deliciousness!


  • 6 slices bacon
  • 20 ounces fresh cheese-filled tortellini
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 3 heads fresh broccoli, cut into florets
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped


  1. Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, crumble and set aside.
  2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook tortellini in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente. Drain, and rinse under cold water.
  3. In a small bowl, mix together mayonnaise, sugar and vinegar to make the dressing.
  4. In a large bowl, combine broccoli, tortellini, bacon, raisins, sunflower seeds and red onion. Pour dressing over salad, and toss.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Hear it on Sunday, Use it on Monday: Hopelessly Devoted?

What are you devoted to? The dictionary defines devotion as:
                      1. Love, loyalty, or enthusiasm for a person, activity, or cause.
                  2. Religious worship or observance

The problem with devotion comes when we are devoted to the wrong things, or maybe I should say when we are devoted to things. Remember the rich man in Mark 10:17-27? He thought he was doing pretty darn well, following all the rules, being an overall "good guy." He wanted to know what else he needed to do, and Jesus told him to sell his stuff and follow Him. That made this guy really sad, he must have had some really nice stuff. He turned around and walked away. He was more devoted to his stuff than he was to following Jesus.

Now I have been having a years long battle with stuff. I know I have too much of it. The last few weeks I have been reading The Hole in Our Gospel and Too Small To Ignore, which have convinced me even further that stuff is not where it's at. 

You see, devotion to stuff, or other people IS hopeless. Stuff does not have the power to save, neither do other people. Placing your devotion in them will leave you feeling empty, and longing to fill that emptiness with other people or more stuff. It will leave you feeling hopeless. Our first devotion must be to God. It's wonderful to be devoted to other people, and even to enjoy your stuff, just don't let them take priority.

Devotion comes in many forms

Devotion to our pets
Devotion of a mother towards her children.
Devotion to a team.
Devotion to a job.
Devotion to our country.
Devotion to shopping.
Devotion to our cars.

And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. Acts 2:42-45

Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Romans 12:10

The apostles sold their possessions and took care of ministering to the needs of those around them, trusting God to provide. We too need to look around us and minister to those in our midst. The things of this world are transient, we can't take our wardrobe, our cars, our houses, jobs, or anything else with us when we go. People are what matters most. God's heart breaks over every lost little one.

Lamentations 1:16 

This is why I weep and my eyes overflow with tears.

No one is near to comfort me, no one to restore my spirit.
My children are destitute because the enemy has prevailed.

Mark 9:36-37
He took a little child and had him stand among them. Taking him in his arms, he said to them, "Whoever welcomes one of these little children in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me does not welcome me but the one who sent me."

Obviously being devoted to our families, jobs, pets, teams etc. is not a bad thing, but like everything, if we put them before God our devotion is out of whack. They are not where our hope lies.  Maybe it is time we took off our blinders and do a gut check on just what it is we are devoted to.

1 Peter 1:3
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,

Blog about what you are hearing from God, how he is whispering (or yelling!) to you and how his words are impacting your life, and then come by to link up to Graceful (the link goes live weekly at 9 p.m. CT on Sundays). Write about what you hear in church on Sunday or a verse that you've been reading or pondering on your own during the week. 


Legend of The Starfish
A vacationing businessman was walking along a beach when he saw a young boy.  Along the shore were many starfish that had been washed up by the tide and were sure to die before the tide returned.  The boy was walking slowly along the sore and occasionally reached down and tossed a beached starfish back into the ocean.  The businessman, hoping to teach the boy a little lesson in common sense, walked up to the boy and said, "I have been watching what you are doing, son.  You have a good heart, and I know you mean well, but do you realize how many beaches there are around here and how many starfish are dying on every beach every day?  Surely, such an industrious and kindhearted boy such as yourself could find something better to do with your time.  Do you really think that what you are doing is going to make a difference?"  The boy looked up at that man, and then he looked down at a starfish by his feet.  He picked up the starfish, and as he gently tossed it back into the ocean, he said, "It makes a difference to that one."
 ~ Anonymous / Oral Traditional  

I have had my own starfish moment. I have become aware of the staggering problem of children living in poverty. Malnutrition causes more than 55%  of the child deaths in our world. Children who are poorly nourished suffer up to 160 days of illness each year. Poor nutrition plays a role in more than half of the 10.9 million child deaths each year--five million deaths.  Undernutrition magnifies the effect of every disease, including measles and malaria. Statistics like these can overwhelm us. We become paralyzed by the sheer magnitude of the problem. Let me ask you, do you remember the  the shock and heartache you felt on 9/11, as you watched the World Trade Center  flame and collapse, taking three thousand innocent lives with it? Do you remember how we all sat glued to our TV's? Imagine if you will, that three hours later another catastrophe struck, at Disney World, imagine the coverage by CNN and FOX. What if as they were scrambling to cover that tragedy, that disaster struck at an NFL stadium and three thousand more people died. Then catastrophe struck the Denver airport. What if that same level of human tragedy continued to happen, every three hours, Tokyo, Rome, Moscow, London, Paris, Berlin. The world would shudder to a grinding halt. Yet 30,000 children under age five are taken from us everyday due to hunger. Yet where are the cameras, the round-the clock news coverage. Everyday, day after day, approximately 30,000 children die. Each of those children is loved by our Father, as much as He loves our own precious little ones.

Now, you and I can't save everyone of those children, anymore than that business man can save everyone of those  starfish, but we can make a difference to one child. In the coming weeks, I will be sharing with you my experience sponsoring a child through Compassion. If even one of you is moved to sponsor another child and change another life, then my words will not be in vain.


Saturday, May 14, 2011

Lilacs for Grandma

My lilacs are in their glory. When we got the snow a few weeks ago I was afraid that they might not bloom. Lilacs always make me think of my Grandma, lilacs were her favorite flower. In fact, lilacs were the flowers for her wedding. Today Grandma and Grandpa Felton would have celebrated their 78th wedding anniversary.

Happy Anniversary Grandma and Grandpa! Love you and miss you still................

Friday, May 13, 2011

Deep Breath

Today's topic from Gypsy Mama- aka Lisa-Jo's  Five Minute Friday  is Deep Breath. For all the rules, head over to her awesome blog and check it out. Basically, she gives us a topic and we are to write for 5 minutes, no editing, what you-see-is-what-you-get! So, I am going to take a deep breath now and......... GO!

You know what you normally do before you jump in to the deep end of the pool, you know, the part that is over your head? You take a big old deep breath, close your eyes, and....... jump! Hopefully you come up gasping for air and if you have faith in your abilities you stay afloat, and maybe if your really good, you swim!

Today I took a deep breath and jumped into the unknown. I am not a great swimmer, so this was definitely out of my comfort zone. Trusting God that He won't let me sink like a stone, since He has been edging me ever close to the deep end of the pool, and ever closer to the edge. I know He is my life guard and I can trust Him to not let me drown. I just need to keep my eyes on Him as Peter did when he stepped out of the boat, when Peter's eyes left the face of Jesus, that is when he started to sink.

Matthew 14:29-31
“And He said “come”, and when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying Lord, save me. And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand and caught him, and said unto him “O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt”.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Multitudes Mondays

I am not exaggerating when I say the book,  One Thousand Gifts has changed my life. Every Monday Ann has a link up where fellow bloggers link their counting journey to 1,000 and beyond. One Thousand Gifts is "A Dare To Live Fully, Right Where You Are." One Thousand Gifts "is a celebration of grace, and a recognition of the power of gratitude. From now on, on Mondays, I will be sharing some of my gifts from the week with you here:

91) Boy grown into man
92)Loving church friends
93) Finding Freedom through Forgiveness
94) Friends talking into the night
95) A garden freshly tilled
96) Afternoons laughing with my girls
97) Marble jar friends
98) Opening to joy
99) Guardian Angels
100) Houses that become homes!!!