Sunday, October 30, 2011

Saturday, October 29, 2011

I AM ONLY ONE

I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do. ~ Helen Keller


I love this woman's spirit! She totally inspires me. Her name is Lynne and she's married to my favorite teaching pastor, Bill Hybels. Each of them in their own individual way, with their own individual gifts and talents are incredible forces. The world is a better place because of their contribution (globally) and my corner of the world is a better place too. I love, love, love what Lynne has to say about Helen Keller's quote and how it inspires her. It's lovely, isn't it? Hope this inspires you too! 

Blessings and happy Saturday!

Until next time,

~Ruthie

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Unhappy?

So many people I know lately are going through great difficulty. And it breaks my heart every time I think about the pain they’re experiencing. Some are going through a health crisis and yet a few others, a marital crisis. These types of crisis often leave us exhausted, frustrated and undeniably unhappy.  

I’m discovering through experience as I observe how people respond to life and through my own life experiences that when we struggle with the BIG stuff in life, it causes us to feel unhappy. And sometimes depending on your level of happiness, everything in life inevitably seems affected by it. You try not to, you try really hard not to, but it does. Sure, we may wear a fabulous social mask that allows us to hide our unhappy feelings for a while, but when we get home and close the door, the noise inside of us is deafening. When I say “unhappy,” I’m not referring to those who suffer from depression due to a chemical imbalance. That’s a completely different category. I’m also not referring to feeling mildly dissatisfied. Mildly dissatisfied is manageable through copious amounts of chocolate. This I know from experience. The unhappy feeling I’m focusing on today is circumstantial unhappiness. Something in life happened to cause that kind of unhappiness to enter into your life. Feelings of unhappiness while intangible in nature are real and they’re a part of life and we all experience it at some point. For example, if you have siblings and survived your childhood, I’m pretty sure you felt unhappy at some point, probably when one of your siblings got a bigger scoop of ice cream in their bowl. Yes, we measure those kinds of things when we're children. And when they happen, it grieves us immensely! But we eventually get over it with the help of a great therapist, right?  

All kidding aside, sometimes our unhappiness feels unfair for sure and sometimes a bit consuming. Feeling unhappy is often triggered by a host of different scenarios and leaves a person feeling loss or hurt or wounded, or they may be feeling great disappointment or fear. It’s a lot of different things, wouldn’t you agree? A personal or marital crisis for example will undoubtedly cause a person to feel unhappy. What ever the situation, I think we’re in agreement that unhappy feelings are real joy killers. Friend, if you’re feeling unhappy today, please be assured that “unhappy” happens to the best of us and its always temporary. That being said, I’ve discovered that we have a choice about our unhappiness. And how we choose makes a huge difference. How we choose to see the situation will determine what our days will look like. When life feels hard and it causes me to feel unhappy, I work really hard to turn the situation around by asking myself what hidden treasure might be discovered within this difficulty. I tell myself that if its happening, surely there has to be something I’m suppose to learn from this. When I ask those types of questions, my perspective of the situation changes and when that takes place, I change how I deal with the situation. I’ve learned that my whole being is affected by this choice. I’ve learned that burying my head in the sand gets me no where really fast and always leaves me feeling stuck. But when I make a choice to change my perspective and to look at the bigger picture and choose hope, I allow myself to go beyond the situation and that is often where I find treasures to be discovered. It’s during life’s difficulty that I remind myself that God is still in control and nothing is impossible with Him and for Him. And if your unhappy state is filled with profound disappointment and feelings of chronic emotional pain, you should extend yourself some grace and lower your expectations regarding the recovery time, your healing time. We all want to feel better quickly but sometimes “feeling better” takes time, a lot of time. Some wounds and hurts and some disappointments take more time than others and its different for everyone. When those difficult seasons surface, I remind myself that the only thing I can control is how I Iove and trust God. I love what the Bible has to say in Romans 8:28. It says: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” Friend, I love God, maybe not perfectly but I do love Him with all my heart. I may not always get it right and I may never be able to love Him as richly and as deeply as He loves me, but I’m pretty sure I will probably die trying.

Are you experiencing some kind of difficulty in your life today? If so, is it something that could be turned into a new perspective, a treasure that will enable you to learn more about yourself and grow more into the real you? May God who understands each need, who listens to every prayer, bless you and keep you in His tender loving care. Remember, you are never alone. 

Blessings and until next time, grace and peace to you always,

Ruthie

Once you choose hope, anything is possible. ~ Christopher Reeves


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Five provocative questions

Many of my friends know that I love, love, love ponderous and provocative questions, probably because I’m a thinker and thinking always leads to discovery. Discovery almost always creates new energy which often leads to new movement. This movement is usually a gradual unfolding. Life, people and how people behave and respond to life intrigue me immensely. I’m always observing and paying attention to what people say, how they say it and how they respond to life's circumstances. This is one of the many ways I learn. Ponderous and provocative questions excite me because I love spending time exploring the answers. I find that in exploring the answers I discover and learn many things about myself. And if you've been following my blog regularly, you know how much I love learning, right? Below you’ll find five powerful questions that will lead to self-discovery. I take no credit for these questions. These questions came from author, life coach and motivational speaker Valorie Burton. I hope these questions provide some fabulous "food for thought" and may they serve as a catalyst to help you move forward in a key area of your life. 

1. Why am I here?

This question gets to the core of your life mission. Every experience, every contact, and every gift or talent that you have exists to support you in accomplishing your mission in life. If you are alive, you are here for a purpose. What will be the most important mark you make on the world?

2. What would I like to learn?

The most interesting people are those with a diversity of perspectives and experiences. Life is a learning journey. The more we learn, the more we grow... and the richer and deeper our life experience. Make a list of things you'd like to learn and make plans to learn them. Be willing to try something new, something that takes you outside of your comfort zone.

3. What brings me joy?

Often it is the simple things that bring us the most joy. Make a list of the things that bring you joy. Then begin incorporating those things into your life on a daily basis. Don't wait for a special occasion to purposefully make your life joyful. You deserve joy every day.

4. What am I most afraid of?

Fear can be our enemy if we allow it to be. Fear also can be a great teacher and a catalyst for change. For example, fear that you will fail can motivate you to be creative and work hard so that you succeed. On the other hand, fear can keep you from living your highest potential if your fear paralyzes you from moving forward in your life. Once you identify your fear, you can begin determining ways to reduce the risk that your fear presents. Once you make the decision to overcome your fear, you find your fears are often more perception than reality. As a result, you fear less in your life than ever before.

5. What is one step I can take today to move closer to my ideal life?

Taking a step toward your dreams will generate excitement for the possibilities available to you. Write a vision of your ideal life and then move toward it one step at a time. Celebrate your steps along the way. Consider that following rules and tradition is not a prerequisite to success. Open your mind to creating your own opportunities - it's what I call "entrepreneurial thinking."

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Awake My Soul - Part 5



Hi Everyone, 

The link below is this weekend’s message at Willow Creek delivered by teaching pastor Darren Whitehead. Darren unpacks the timeless wisdom of Psalm 27 and explores what God has to say about worrying and anxiety. From time to time, everyone feels varying degrees of stress and worry or anxiety. This message is one that we can all relate to. Darren does a fantastic job unpacking Psalm 27 and my prayer for you today is that this message will encourage you and bless you beyond measure. If something in your life is causing you to worry, my prayer for you is that you'll walk away after watching this video feeling peace and hope. May I remind you that you can cast your cares on God? He wants you to. He can't address it if you're not willing to surrender it to Him. May God’s grace and His peace be upon you today and always. Blessings to you!

Until next time,

~ Ruthie

Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you. ~ 1 Peter 5:7

Today's Funny

Hope these posts make you laugh!



OMG! This happens to me quite often in my garage, almost always in the morning with heels on, while carrying my laptop bag, a purse and juggling coffee in one hand. LOL!


Oh my gosh ... this has happened to me at parties talking to people I barely know. A bit embarrassing but incredibly funny! LOL! 

: )


This is so me! LOL! I can't stop laughing!

10 thoughts and one for good measure

Through your words and your actions, make it your ambition to leave every person a little better off than you found them.

God does perfect work through imperfect people. That's good news for all of us!

God wants to replace your doubt with FAITH, your pain with HOPE and your fear with LOVE.

"Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong. And do everything with love." 1 Corinthians 16:13-14

Every sunrise reminds us that God is always creating new beginnings.

Don't let anybody tell you that you can't do something when the Bible says you can do ALL things through Christ.

“I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

Treat every day like it's the most important day of your life, because it just might be.

Don't spend your life speculating on the future or reliving the past. Either way, you're missing out on the present.

God specializes in the impossible.

Like water flowing to its destination, let nothing stop you from achieving your goal, even the seemingly immovable obstacle.


The words above are not my words but a collection of tweets I read on Twitter this morning. I trust they'll bless you. Happy Sunday! 

25 Random things about me

  1. My favorite colors are blue, green and pink.
  2. I'm a great parallel parker! Really I am! Straight up! ... No joke! :o)
  3. Favorite artists / painters: Jack Vettriano and Vincent Van Gogh.
  4. I love singing in the car, out loud all the time. 
  5. I leave myself voice mail messages at the office ALL the time to add things to my TO-DO- LIST. And sometimes instead of voice mails, I send myself e-mails to the office from my Blackberry to do the same thing. LOL!  Does this make me a good delegator????  ; )
  6. If I had to choose, I would rather clean than cook, probably because cleaning brings harmony and order to my life and cooking can be messy. I'm just sayin'.
  7. I moved to LouisvilleKY at the age of 27 for approximately 3 years. It was a wonderful life experience. 
  8. I have more books than I have time to read. But that's okay, because I imagine heaven will have a library of some sorts anyway. 
  9. I cried when Elvis Presley died. 
  10. I love to make people laugh. (This is one of my favorite things.)  
  11. I sometimes smile and laugh at the most inappropriate things. Always gets me into trouble!
  12. I'm easily distracted by chocolate. 
  13. I hate scary movies ... but I love a great comedy or a great love story! 
  14. I’m convinced my prince is out there somewhere. I think he’s just stuck in traffic. 
  15. I love conversations with strangers. (It's amazing what strangers will share with you.)
  16. I’m so-o not a morning person but totally appreciate how sacred the world feels when I’m up super early and it’s still dark out and most of the world is quiet and still sleeping.
  17. Most people don’t realize how intuitive I am until they get to really know me. 
  18. I love dancing! :o)
  19. I’m not a cat person, and yet I have a cat and I really love her. It took me 13 years to learn that.
  20. My son Michael and I are both September babies. He was born on the 16th and I was born on the 24th.
  21. I hope the words on my epitaph will read: She inspired, she was a helper and she danced. 
  22. I gave birth to the most beautiful baby in 1987. Best thing that ever happened to me. 
  23. I’ve learned through experience that the birthing process is much easier than raising a child.
  24. Being a mother is the hardest job I have ever loved.
  25. I’ve learned in life that the only thing I can control is how I love God.



Saturday, October 22, 2011

Breast Cancer Awareness Day at the Office

Friday, October 21, 2011
Many of you know that October is breast cancer awareness month (BCAM). And as a breast cancer survivor (2-yrs now), I've been giving alot of thought to how I can create awareness during the month of October with the people I do life with. Last month I created awareness and raised approximately $900 for the cause through City of Hope. The donations were made directly to City of Hope as I walked as a participant in a 5k walk. The walk is held every year near the office, at a near by park. This was my third year walking to raise awareness and to raise funds although this year, I think I ran most of it thanks to my bossy sister-in-law Evelyn who brilliantly insisted we try to run most it. Love you Evelyn! ... my knees, not so much. ; )

As a woman who works outside of her home, most of my waking hours during the week are spent at the office and in light of that, a brilliant idea was birthed a couple of weeks ago. I felt a prompting to host a breast cancer awareness day at the office, and yesterday was the BIG pink day. Coincidentally, I happened to pick a day that fell right in line with our annual Health Fair day which was quite perfect if you ask me. I didn't realize this until days after I sent my initial invitation to the women at the office. And what a fun day it was! It was also jeans day, a rare occasion for us in corporate, one that we look forward to when it happens. The prompting came to me in the form of a whisper, which I'm sure was all God. I love it when that happens. I followed through on this prompting because life is important. Your life, my life, our life is important and it has purpose and early detection is what saves lives. Putting it together in such a short amount of time should have felt overwhelming with my busy life but surprisingly, it wasn't. Everything came together beautifully and almost effortlessly. What a blessing! I think anytime you do something in the spirit of love and joy, the experience is always wonderful and blesses you and others richly. I purchased all the supplies within that two week window and decorated and set up the night before which gave me an opportunity to have short but meaningful conversations with the evening security guard Dave who stopped by during his rounds and with Isabella who is one of the Polish cleaning ladies at our office who hugged me tight after giving her a pink ribbon lapel pin and a pink bracelet. Dave is 74 and sadly lost his wife to cancer several years ago. : ( He shared her story with me and from what I could tell, he misses her terribly and loved her deeply. The look on his face made my heart feel sad to learn he lost his wife so early in life, he still has many good years ahead of him. I learned that he lives on his own, has four children and I trust that they look after him okay. Isabella and I always speak Spanish and Polish to each other. She's teeny-tiny, fit as a fiddle and buzzes around our office emptying waste baskets, cleaning, dusting, and vacuuming. She arrives to my office every day around 5pm and I greet her in Polish and she responds in kind but in Spanish. She's a lovely woman with a kind heart probably in her thirties I would imagine. Isabella taught me how to say "How are you" and how to respond in kind in Polish. Its so fun to greet the Polish cleaning crew in Polish before I leave the office when I work late. The looks on their faces are priceless. Their eyes always light up and they always smile, almost always in surprise when I speak to them in their native language. It's one of the best parts of leaving the office late most days. I've digressed here, haven't I? My apologies. 

The location of the breast cancer awareness event was just outside my office and I invited approximately 100 women I know at the office to stop by at their convenience between 8am and 4pm. I set up a couple of tables with delicious treats, mostly all sweet, pamphlets, flowers and of course pink balloons. The area was a sea of pink and you couldn't miss the pink helium balloons that hovered over the pink zone just outside my office. The American Cancer Society donated 300 pamphlets on breast cancer awareness, the importance of mammograms and why early detection saves lives. They also donated 100 pink ribbon lapel pins thanks to a lovely young lady by the name of Karen Perry who I met on Monday afternoon by chance who works for the American Cancer Society. Karen had the pink ribbon lapel pins in her car! Whoa! What are the chances of that happening??? Colleagues Veronica Ramos and Carmen Flores baked cupcakes and Toni Vargas, a fellow member of my team brought in bagels for the event. Veronica's passion is baking lovely, tasty and festive cupcakes and she literally jumped at the chance to bake for the event when I told her about my vision to create awareness. Tammy Hidalgo, another woman at the office surprised me with beautiful flowers to dress up the table. How thoughtful! Thank you ladies!!! Your thoughtfulness and contributions made the day perfect! So many of my friends at the office offered to help but I insisted that it wasn't going to be anything big and encouraged them to simply show up in pink for support and to pick up information (pamphlets) that morning.

Can I let you in on a little secret? I work for a really great company. And I'm not just saying that. It truly is a GREAT company for many reasons, but mostly because of the people. Companies are not just brick and mortar, people make companies great. And great people are a companies greatest asset and investment. I have the priviledge of working with a terrific bunch of talented and lovely people and I'm learning and relearning with each new opportunity how willing people are to help and to contribute to make a difference. When I shared what I was planning with my manager Kim Thomas, she suggested that I encourage those I invite to wear pink. Now isn't that brilliant? Why didn't I think of that???  Great suggestion! Thank you Kimberly!  When I shared what I was doing with our facilities manager Missy Kolbash, she decided on her own to send an e-mail to all the employees in our building asking if they would consider wearing pink on Friday, October 21st in honor of breast cancer awareness. Thank you Missy! Many people wore pink! I purchased additional breakfast treats to encourage people to stop by (food always helps) and gave out pink breast cancer bracelets, pens and pencils to create awareness and included the pink ribbon lapel pins that the ACS donated. One of my many favorite parts of Friday was a surprise I received. The ECS corporate finance and credit department surprised me with a lovely card, with lovely words yesterday morning congratulating me on being cancer-free two years now and raised $165 among themselves and gave that money to me to donate. Whoa! Do you see what I mean??? The money will be donated to the American Cancer Society (ACS) and to City of Hope. Thank you lovely people! As I write to you, my eyes well up with tears, tears of gratitude because of their goodness. And in the afternoon, we cut a cake to shine a light on those who are still fighting breast cancer, to admire the survivors and to honor those who left us too soon due to this horrible disease. Yesterday's event wasn't about raising money although it could have been. Yesterday was all about awareness. It was about raising awareness and shining a light on the importance of becoming aware and to learn and to share with others about breast cancer and early detection because early detection is what saves lives. It's what saved my life. The event was absolutely successful and the day was nothing short of fantastic! It felt like a BIG love fest. Scores of people wearing pink stopped by all day long. Some came in droves, others came on their own and for one day, we created a pink movement at our corporate office. I loved every delicious minute! Tom Bubulka another colleague of mine took many of the photos I'm including in this post and took a fantastic group photo. See below. Thank you Tom! My best friend Carlos came out to visit me during the lunch hour and drove me to pick up the cake in the afternoon. Thank you Carlos for recognizing how important this day was to me. You get me and I love that about you. Bless you! It was so wonderful to see so many people wearing pink. Even the men wore pink! How terrific! This was our 1st annual breast cancer awareness day at the office, our first of many I'm sure. I plan, with God's blessing and the support of others to do this again next year. My desire is to make it bigger, better and pinker and to make it easy and or easier for my co-workers to donate to this cause, even if it's a dollar that we collect from each person so we can make an online donation at the end of the day. Most people learn and remember through experiences and my desire is for people to walk away with a greater sense of awareness through this experience and to learn about early detection and breast cancer prevention because everyone deserves to live long enough to celebrate 100 birthdays.  As always, many thanks for reading. 


With a heart full of gratitude, 


~ Ruthie



"The table"




The cake

                                                



Cupcakes by Carmen Flores



 Isn't this a fantastic photo?

Veronica's festive cupcakes!

The invitation

My mantra


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Dangerous Women Creed

Dear God:

Please make us dangerous women.
May we be women who acknowledge our power
to change, and grow, and be radically alive for God.
May we be healers of wounds and righters of wrongs.
May we weep with those who weep and
speak for those who cannot speak for themselves.
May we cherish children, embrace the elderly,
and empower the poor.
May we pray deeply and teach wisely.
May we be strong and gentle leaders.
May we sing songs of joy and talk down fear.
May we never hesitate to let passion push us,
conviction compel us, and righteous anger energize us.
May we strike fear into all that is unjust
and evil in the world.
May we dismantle abusive systems and
silence lies with truth.
May we shine like stars in a darkened generation.
May we overflow with goodness in the name of God
and by the power of Jesus.
And in that name and by that power,
may we change the world.

Dear God, please make us dangerous women.

Excerpt from Lynne Hybel’s book: Nice Girls Don’t Change the World

Fear Not!


I'm learning these days that fear is the polar opposite of faith, faith in holy a God, faith in something bigger than ourselves and certainly faith that is bigger than our problems. And lately I've been pondering what fear might mean to most people. I think it means alot of different things to many different people. If someone is experiencing a personal or a marital crisis or feeling disappointment, or loss or experiencing a serious health issue, fear might represent great concern that things may never get better. Certainly nothing ever stays the same and that scares people too. Things and people and life are always changing or evolving. Fear for many is anxiety about what lies ahead, the unknown. That being said, today's provocative question is: Are you standing in faith or are you living in fear? 


I've mentioned this before in a previous post but it bears repeating because I find this so very interesting. The Bible says "Fear Not" many times over. Not in those exact words but in many different ways. It says it 365 times and 365 is alot if you ask me, such an interesting number. God's word also says that He's always with us and to trust in Him many, many times. I believe it's there for a reason. I believe its because He knew well in advance that we need that kind of encouragement and that we would benefit and be comforted from that kind of reassurance. Encouragement and reassurance help us to carry on in life. 

With intent focus these days, I'm trying as best as I can to live my life fully alive, paying attention to everything and especially to the words I read and hear. I've confessed this before and I'll confess it again: My relationship with God has never been about easy answers. I wish I could tell you that the answers have always been easy. Sometimes they are / were. And believe me, when they're easy, I'm happy and grateful. But truth be told, some answers and some discoveries have been really hard to swallow. But the answers and the discoveries have always been helpful. They help me to grow both spiritually and emotionally and that's always a good thing. It's good because when I know better, I do better. 

God knows all things and see's all things and desires His very best for us and because of that; I know I can trust Him. And that's something I truly desire for all people. Trusting God helps me to stand firm in faith and to fear less. It helps me to live confidently and courageously. Loving God with all my heart hasn't and does not exempt me from fear. I wish it did, but it doesn’t. Fear is sneaky and tricky and if you ask me, I'll be the first to admit that I hate fear with all my heart from head to toe. 

We all experience fear in life at some capacity with varying levels. It enters our lives sometimes knowingly and sometimes it creeps in when we least expect it and when it does, it always robs us of our peace but I'm here to tell you that with prayer and faith, it will always flee. 

Friend: Allow me to encourage you to stand firm prayerfully in faith against your giants because you are not alone. That bears repeating: YOU ARE NOT ALONE. You never have been and you never will be. Stay encouraged dear one and don't believe the negative thoughts that creep into your head, because it isn't so. That kind of stinkin' thinkin' is what keeps most people bonded to fear. If we don't fight against fear and negative thought patterns, it will take over and paralyze us. And that's no life. 

I came so they could have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of. ~ Jesus (John 10:10)

The above verse always reminds me to live life to the fullest. To be fully alive is to have a heart for God. I'm learning these days that God isn’t after our compliance. What He's after is our heart because when we have a heart for God, compliance is natural. When our hearts belong to God, we willingly comply with all the things that are good and noble and worthy. To be fully alive is to have a heart that breaks for what breaks God’s heart. It means that we will always experience bittersweet, sometimes together and sometimes separately. Lastly, living fully alive always believes in the redemption of all things. I just love that. Don’t you?

Today I choose to live fully alive standing in faith, living fearlessly and courageously loving God and loving people more, always and forever. Yes, that's what I want to do ... forever. 

Until next time,

~Ruthie

Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. ~ Isaiah 41:10

For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. ~ 2 Timothy 1:7

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
~ John 14:27  

For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.
~ Jeremiah 29:11


A Prayer Against Fear:

Dear Father in Heaven, 

Please lean in and hear my prayer today. My fear has trapped me and its consuming me. I’m tired of living my life under the weight of fear. These above verses reassure me of your presence and confirm that You're able to deliver me from my fears. Please allow me to feel Your love and to feel Your power in my life and through that power, please replace the fear in my life with super natural peace that surpasses all understanding. Your word says that perfect love casts out fear and because You are love, I invite You and ask You to cast out my fear. I thank you for promising me peace, a peace that only You can provide. I receive this peace as I ask You to still my troubled heart and because I choose to believe that You are with me, I don't have to live in fear any longer. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.


Saturday, October 15, 2011

What I've learned in life

  1. I’ve learned that we often teach others what we need to learn ourselves.
  2. I’ve learned that when we encourage others, we often find ourselves encouraged.
  3. I’ve learned that life is not consistent.
  4. I’ve learned that it’s okay to say you're not okay when life is hard or when you’re hurting.
  5. I’ve learned that the single most important ingredient that makes the most difference in life is love.
  6. I’ve learned that I don’t have all the answers. I don’t think we’re suppose to have all the answers anyway.
  7. I’ve learned that sometimes I don’t know what to say and it’s okay to remain silent until I do.
  8. I’ve learned that I’m happiest when I’m helping others adding value to someone.
  9. I’ve learned that I’m a forgiver and I like that about myself.
  10. I’ve learned that it’s taken me a really long time to learn things about myself.

I challenged myself today to come up with a list of ten things I've learned about life or about myself and these were the first ten things that came to mind. I gave myself ten minutes to come up with this list. I think I completed it in five.

What are some of the things you've learned about life or about yourself? If you gave yourself ten minutes today to create a list, what would that list look like?

Scenes we love


Have I shared with you how much I love, love, love Cary Grant??? Well I do and this is one of my favourite Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman scenes. It's lovely, isn't it?

Happy Sweetest Day Luvahs! 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

A Mouth Full of Joy!

My new favorite meal: Chicken Saltimbocca served at Cooper’s Hawk Winery!

My dining experience last night at Cooper's Hawk was outstanding! The atmosphere was great and the service was spot on. My meal was fantastico and the company was great as we celebrated new beginnings, nothing short of joyful.

You’re probably wondering what chicken saltimbocca is, right? Well, for those of you who might be wondering, it consists of thin slices of chicken breast sautéed with prosciutto, provolone, garlic, and sage served in a white wine lemon sauce. Doesn't that sound heavenly? My saltimbocca last night included artichoke hearts, capers, and tomatoes. It was “OMG ah-mazing!” The prosciutto imparts a savory salty flavor that goes oh so well with chicken and adds such a delightful texture to the overall dish.

As many of you might know, I love learning and as much as possible, I try to learn one new thing every day. Seriously, I do. I’m hopeful it will keep me sharp until I’m 100 [Insert smile here]. Anyhow, I learned today that saltimbocca is an Italian word which means “jumps in the mouth.” Saltimbocca is "classically" made with veal, and I'm super glad that Cooper's Hawk chose chicken because I'm not a veal kind of girl. I prefer chicken or fish.  Saltimbocca is most popular in southern Switzerland, Italy, Spain and Greece.

Cooper’s Hawk Chicken Saltimbocca is without question a mouth full of joy and a must have if you haven't tried it. The flavors pop and really do jump in your mouth. It’s was wildly delicious and goes down in this season as one of my favorite meals. Two thumbs up!

Until next time, stay thirsty and buon appetito!

~Ruthie



Wine, Chocolate and a Woman's Touch

Wine

A Norwegian study of 5,033 men and women found that moderate wine consumption (at least four glasses over two weeks) is linked to better cognitive function. The researchers say that their results support the findings of 68 other studies comprising 145,308 people; most of the studies also determined that teetotalers were at greater risk for dementia. Scientists suspect this is in part because wine contains antioxidants called polyphenols, which can reduce inflammation in artery walls and improve blood flow to the brain. I’ll drink to that!

Chocolate

Researchers who studied 32,000 middle-aged and elderly Swedish women found that those who ate two servings of chocolate a week had a significantly lower rate of hospitalization for heart failure. This may be because cacao contains flavonoids, chemicals thought to combat the free radicals that cause plaque buildup in the arteries.

A Woman’s Touch

A study published this summer revealed the power of feminine reassurance. Participants were given a choice between a risky investment and a safer bet; as the researchers delivered instructions, they gave some subjects a pat on the shoulder. The subjects who were touched by a female researcher invested significantly more money in the gamble than those patted by a man. Researchers theorize that contact with a woman triggered the same confidence boost the subjects received from their mother's touch when they were children.

From the December 2010 issue of O, The Oprah Magazine

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Girlfriends


Nicole Johnson is a gift and talented performer. This will make you smile perhaps even laugh or giggle. I know I did. Watching this helps me remember what a blessing it is to have girlfriends.  

The Invisible Woman



Nicole Johnson is a brilliant bestselling author and motivational speaker. I've had the pleasure of hearing her speak many times through the years at Women of Faith conferences. Her messages are a breath of fresh air, always powerful and filled with encouragement. And today, she’s one of the most sought-after creative communicators in America. Many of my girlfriends who are married with children will appreciate this video clip and Nicole's encouraging message because most of them have devoted their lives to loving and raising children, supporting their husbands and managing a household single handledly while their husbands spend most of their time working and traveling. They've confessed to me through the years that they too have often felt invisible. I’ve even heard this from my single mom friends. If you fall into this category, my prayer for you is that this video will be a source of encouragement to you. You're not alone and you are NOT invisible to God. If you're a mom, a wife or a woman who has dedicated her life to a cause greater than herself, this video is for you with great admiration for the greatness of what you are building when no one see's. 

I took a peak at Nicole's website this evening. On her home page she writes: "We live in a world of great beauty and enormous pain. I like to write about the strange way they come together on the shores of hope."  Don't you just love that???

Wishing you peace and wholeness today and always, 

~Ruthie

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men. ~ Colossians 3:23