Tuesday, August 10, 2021
Friday, July 23, 2021
I’m crying as I type this out.
I’ve been weepy lately.
Grandpapa and Granny. This picture below of them is just my favorite thing ever! If you can’t tell, they loved each other with such a deep love for over 6 decades. Granny was right beside him when he passed after she stayed there for weeks not wanting to miss a thing!
Grandpapa’s world was absolutely God and his family and his farm and everybody knew it. The Walker family is very close-knit and loving, and I attribute that to these two and the example they set for us all. Grandpapa loved the Lord and it was evident! He loved people and would tell them about what Jesus has done for him. He wasn’t a missionary, he didn’t go to Bible school or even have a degree. He did ministry the organic, grass-roots, first church kind of way and that is simply that Jesus just exuded out from everything he did!! His body may have been slowly slipping away this year, but his spirit was very strong! I just recently heard of how this past winter he literally gave a man he had just met the new coat off his back, because that man was cold and didn’t have a way to stay warm! That’s the kind of man I always knew him as, but he wasn’t always that way —here’s how the Lord turned a trial into something very good for His glory…
Grandpapa was a highly regarded certified welder for the pipeline, exactly like my dad is, and in fact he was the one who got my dad into welding in the first place! One of the very best, he worked on the “great Alaskan” pipeline in the ‘70s. Through his success in that job, he came back home and built his family a beautiful brick home. At this time, he wasn’t in church regularly and his life revolved around his work. In 1989 something happened where God got his attention. Tragically, his hand was blown off in an explosion on a job, and this required major surgery to repair and left him no choice but to retire from welding. If you don’t know, a good welder needs a steady hand like a surgeon. after that accident, his life was never the same! He would tell you how the Lord used that accident for His glory to turn his life around. Grandpapa saw the merciful hand of God in that accident, and his life became even more fruitful and blessed as he began walking everyday with the Lord. No doubt he would tell this story today if you asked him about it in Heaven!
Grandpapa and Granny built the beautiful country home, we know today, on their farm land just after the accident, and he began to go into full time farming! Farming is all I remember Grandpapa doing. He would always be getting on or off a tractor or coming back from the hill where his cattle was. He was a cowboy at heart, and just a handful of years ago he built a small, rustic cabin on his property in the woods for himself. He built it with his own two hands and with lots of love! He was so proud of that cabin, and it’s such a serene place for solitude and rest on their farm! That’s where these photos of him and Granny were taken that capture him so well. That cabin will always be cherished by our family—Always!
We had a family fish fry almost one month to the date before his passing. It was at their house, and he was there with most of my extended family doing what we do best which is cooking, eating and laughing and playing together at the farm. I am so so glad he planned this fish fry! Oh, my. Little did we all know it would be the last time we would all be together like that and it was the last time I had a conversation with him. The Lord was good to give us one last time together. The next time I was there, was the day he passed we met back at the farm with Granny. The family met to surround Granny with love. We are, the cried a lot, and to remembered the ver best about him as we processed and released him to Jesus. He was already with Jesus, but sometimes our hearts take a bit longer to release. I will miss him with all my heart!!
So exactly to the very hour, these two amazing souls crossed over into Glory just one week apart. We went from barely recovering from one good-bye to the next. But they have no more ailments or pain in Heaven! They have brand new bodies so the loss is strictly ours. We will miss them, but we will continue to honor the legacy they build their life on and we will water the seeds of faith they planted to all whom they met along the way! The torch is passed down and we will proudly take up the eternal cause our grandparents left behind.
This scratches the surface of them and their lives. I may write more in the future, but as you can imagine it takes an emotional toll to recollect it all.
I want to honor my mom for a moment and say thank you to her and her siblings for caring for him and Granny at the end. They are still caring for Granny as she’s back at their beloved farm.
Please pray for both my Granny and Heath’s Pa, especially as they mourn the love of their life and need the strength and resolve to move forward in the days ahead. They know and love the Lord so I know they’ll be alright, but I can’t imagine losing my favorite person in all the world.
I will be okay, and I am okay! The reflection of their beautiful lives have given me a perspective of truly appreciating and enjoying every single day—even the toughest ones. I am reminded that I am building a life that matters!!! What we do in our homes and in the lives around us everyday matters for generations to come and for eternity. It goes way beyond us, for this is Kingdom work!!
Thank you for the love and support you’ve shown and for allowing me to introduce you to two of the greatest people to grace the earth.
Thursday, July 8, 2021
Grilled Corn on the Cob
Fresh corn on the cob
Herbs, chopped (I used flat leaf Parsley and Basil)
Tear enough foil pieces to wrap each corn on the cob and you’ll use about 1 Tbsp. butter for each large corn on the cob. So this time I shucked 6, and I used approx. 6 Tbsp. Butter—probably just a bit less. As you know if you have followed me for a while, I eye ball this sort of thing!
Take your corn and lay it on the foil. Cut a pat of butter in half, place on the corn, and sprinkle with salt. Be fairly generous here unless you’re using salted butter. Wrap the foil around the corn on the cob really well and repeat with the remaining corn and ingredients.
I grilled the corn on med-high heat after allowing the grill to heat on high. I grilled it for about 20 minutes, turning a third of the way, a couple of times. Keep it in it’s foil packets until the very end of grilling. Don’t worry, you’ll still get some beautiful char even with the foil on. The butter and salt with distribute around the corn while it gets nice and tender on the grill in the foil.
Take off the grill, unwrap the corn and place on a serving dish. Add some additional salt and sprinkle the chopped herbs over it all!
Friday, July 2, 2021
I have to share this easy and freshingly delicious recipe I made for our family’s Memorial Day gathering we hosted this year. Watermelon salsa! It’s technically pico de gallo, but in this application I used it as a dip like salsa. It would be amazing on grilled chicken, I’m sure but the salty corn chips were perfect to soak up the spicy and sweet taste this salsa brings!
Wednesday, May 26, 2021
Heath and I took the kids camping! We rented a beautiful, new camper from some friends of ours. The site was already set up so comfortably and it was honestly the best way for us to camp since we don’t own a camper or even a truck. This was a quick getaway about 30 minutes away from home the first weekend of May, which meant beautiful weather here in Kentucky!
My favorite things about camping are the very quiet early mornings before everyone else in my camper—or in the campground— is up and moving around yet.
It’s special to step outside with my first cup of coffee that I soooo very quietly made (not to wake the kids) and enter the fresh air as the sun is coming up through the woods. Then I usually make a small fire in the fire pit and snuggle with my coffee and soak up the fact that I’m surrounded by nature—God’s creation!
We enjoyed all the food that we made. I kept it very simple: roasted hotdogs with chips and queso dip (which was delicious!) and gooey s’mores the first night.
S’mores are a must, especially for Rosemary!
So lets talk queso dip! This recipe was different than I usually make, and so very good! It had the best spice and smoky undertones about it. It was so delicious that I want to share the very easy recipe with you!
Smoky and Spicy Queso Dip
8 oz. pepper jack cheese, cubed
Half brick of Velvetta, cubed
Jar of salsa verde (I initially used just shy of a full jar and it was perfect for me.)
A few dashes of Cumin
Put everything together in a cast iron or another pot, and heat until everything is gooey and melted! Stir every few minutes so it doesn’t burn.
I cooked ours in cast iron skillet I brought along with us, over a hot grill. It’s delicious with tortilla chips!
For breakfasts we had pancakes cooked on the griddle, which was really delicious and fun, and sausage in the cast iron pan over the grill.
Lunch was simply sub sandwiches with deli ham and various cheese with chips and pickles.
Dinner the second night was delicious! I made some chili at home the evening before we left and brought it in my red Dutch oven. I heated that up over the fire because why not!? We are roughing it after all! Lol!
( In hindsight, I don’t recommend doing this unless you’re using a cast iron Dutch oven that’s not glazed. I may have ruined that pot. I can’t get the blackness off and it still smells like smoke, but it was very inexpensive. I’ve used this pot it hundreds of times over the last 13 years. Lol.) You live and learn.
We had the hearty chili with some fried cornbread made on the griddle, and we roasted a few more hotdogs for those who wanted chili dogs and finished the cheese dip. Very cozy and perfect for camping!
Dessert was the favorite of everybody’s though!.. I made a classic campfire cherry dump cake, except I cooked it over the grill! I have never made any dessert on the grill before, but I was improvising since I didn’t have a cast iron Dutch oven to make it in the fire, and the pan was too big for the camper’s oven. This grilled cherry dump cake turned out so delicious!!! Oh my word. I think we were all pleasantly surprised. It’s good enough the kids want me to make it at home, too. To serve with some vanilla or butter pecan ice cream would take it over the top!
The beauty of this recipe is that it so easy and only requires the cake mix, cherries and butter! The cinnamon and almond extract are optional. Like any dump cake, you simply dump or layer the ingredients.. no stirring required! This is my kind of food when camping!
“Campfire” Cherry Dump Cake
1 Box Yellow Cake Mix
1 Can Cherry Pie Filling
1 Stick of Butter, Melted (1/2 c.)
A sprinkle of Cinnamon, optional
1 tsp. Almond Extract, optional, I didn’t use this
-Spray or butter a 9x13 inch baking dish. (Sometimes I just rub the butter’s wax paper after I’ve taken the butter out of it.)
-Mix the almond extract, if using, with the cherries and pour the can of cherries into the pan and spread evenly.
-Sprinkle the box of dry cake mix over the top of the cherries. Drizzle melted butter over the dry cake mix, although it won’t cover all the cake mix and that’s ok.
-Lightly sprinkle cinnamon all over, if using. It’s as simple as that!
-Bake in an oven for about 50 minutes or until light golden brown. Or bake it on a closed grill set on med-high for about 20-30 minutes. I don’t have an exact time for this because I just winged it. But I would say to check every 10 minutes or so and take off when you can start to smell it and it becomes light golden brown and bubbly. It took me about 25 minutes to bake!
-Let cool enough to eat and enjoy! We loved this super simple dessert!