Good News First!


What you are looking at here is a bit of good in the world! These are a few shots of generosity found this December.

The girls in the top left photo volunteered to collect some of what you see in both the top and bottom right corner photos. The bins in the pictures are full of sports bras, t-shirts, socks and shorts, all of which will be making their way to Uganda this month. There is an amazing program with an even more amazing story behind it, in Jinja, Uganda, called Children of Grace.  I was invited to work with this table at a church Christmas luncheon and was able to chat with one of the program directors who told me all about this beautiful organization which helps children in Uganda who have lost their mothers to AIDS. 

The photo in the top center and the one on the bottom left are both items from the family we adopted this Christmas. I am in no way trying to pat myself or my husband on the back right now. The generosity found in these gifts came from others! We had planned to give each family member in this small family of three, one item. However, my mother and grandmother stepped in first. Between the two of them, the seven year-0ld of the family was given a pair of pajamas, a school outfit, a dressy skirt and top, some fuzzy socks and a sparkly pair of Hello Kitty shoes. THEN, our good friends Jody and Travis stepped in and gave the family two seriously generous gift cards, one for groceries and the other was a Visa card, they could use wherever they choose. I feel like it was my family who was adopted this year!

The photo in the bottom center and the right center are some of the gift gathered for a family adopted through my women’s group at church. I wanted to show you all the bikes that were generously sold for only $25 to one of the groups who were searching for the gift that a needy family really wanted. These bikes are said to sell for somewhere around $600! What a gift this family will have this year.

If you are a personal friend on Facebook, then you already know about my friend, Jen. She spent the past month collecting donations for a struggling single mother, who has had a long, hard battle with cancer. Jen asked for $10 gift cards to make this lady’s Christmas a little brighter. Over $3,500 later, the generous spirit of Jen’s heart has made this Christmas a very special one for a mom and her daughter.

The best part? I know more stories than these!

There is another sweet lady I want to tell you about. Her name is Melissa and I’ve been able to work in Dallas’ class at church on the occasional Sunday and play with Melissa’s adorably sweet daughter, Kate. Check out Melissa’s blog, The Larson Lingo. If you’d like to help someone out this Christmas, consider sending Melissa’s friends in Newton, Connecticut a small donation or gift card. These friends of Melissa’s include two children who left Sandy Hook safely, but witnessed things no child should ever have to. Melissa plans to send some gift cards to Panera, Starbucks, Cold Stone and other fun spots for this friend to take her 1st and 4th grade kids. The hope is to offer a few escapes that will lift the spirits of these heartbroken children. If you’d like to send $5 or a gift card, please email me at or leave a message on the Food It Forward facebook page. I’m sure Melissa’s friend could arrange to pass out or share any extra donations that come her way!

Here comes the bad news.


I took Dallas to See’s candy to pick up ONE piece before he got his flu shot. Look what found its way into the car and then to my glutes. Well, they didn’t make it to my actual glute muscles, but they are sitting comfortably near them. I can tell you, it was NOT on my DAMY plan. Neither was a lot of what I have recently eaten. However, I’m not giving up! I am still only at about 50% of being on-plan, but I am trying desperately to shed my all or nothing attitude about a healthy lifestyle. I ain’t quittin’ honey (even if my jeans have).

Look what I found in the waiting room that infamous flu shot day:


So much guilt!

You know what is a better find? The magazines you’ve been wanting to read, but will not buy. I always find those at my Grandma’s house. My Grandma is friggin’ awesome.


I would like you to meet my new favorite salad, buffalo chicken with greek yogurt dressing!  To make the chicken, you simply heat up some precooked chicken pieces in a skillet with one part water, two parts buffalo flavor hot sauce and a few dashes Worcestershire sauce. Get the mixture nice and bubbly, then let simmer for 5-10 minutes. The dressing is a mixture of greek yogurt and blue cheese with a splash of apple cider vinegar. Lots of flavor, tons of heat and a bit of creamy coolness!


I’ve been surrounded by holiday food lately, which I am sure you have to. You can’t escape it! Carby and sugary foods are the new Kardashians. My kids aren’t helping either. They are not so slowly evolving into little candy canes. Aaaaand, would anyone mind inventing a candy cane that isn’t sticky? Thanks.

So, I found a great deal on a gingerbread house at Fresh & Easy which was already assembled and contained no crazy ingredients. I had big hopes for the little cottage. Here is the reality:


And here is the other reality, there was NO way my kids were going to let this puppy sit and dry overnight. This is what the shack looked like a good 20 minutes after start time.


As added DAMY incentive, I am posting this photo of myself in all my weight gain glory. Quick, someone sing something angelic for me!


If you have read more than two or three posts here, you may remember I mentioned that I am writing a book. Just wanted to update…still writing it. Yeah, that’s still about all that I have to say about it. Just wanted to let you know it’s still coming. It mostly writes itself when I have the rare chance to be alone and walk the streets. Uh, you know what I mean.


Glad to have to chance to sit and chat again! Happy a couple days away from Friday, friends!

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