Wednesday’s Ode #19

  Shrimp and grits at Madison’s Restaurant, Highlands, NC

I just love shrimp and grits! I know, I know, this is really just a Southern thing, but I am a Southern girl; so, I guess it fits. I have to say, if you haven’t tried shrimp and grits, you must give it a try. Actually, you must give it at least two tries, because shrimp and grits can come in so many different styles, and it takes a bit to realize which style you might like. 🙂

There are two main preparations for shrimp and grits. What I will call the Louisiana-style usually has a lot of sausage, spices sauce and tomatoes added to the dish, and, what I will call the “Southern” style, has more grits and shrimp. My favorite style is a little less Louisiana-style and a little more Southern style. Both are really good, it just simply depends on your personal preference. For this post, I will be referring to more of this Southern preparation. 

If the restaurant we visit has shrimp and grits, you can just about bet that it will be part of my order that day. It is very rare that I won’t order it, unless it is a restaurant at which we often eat, we will be visiting again soon, it’s not the style I prefer, or it’s just an “off” day for me, and I plan to try them later. I love shrimp and grits that much!!

My favorite preparation is the kind in which the grits are freshly stone ground, cooked to perfection with a texture which is both creamy and gritty with just a touch of cheese. The shrimp are blackened just a bit and sautéed in a sauce of just the right amount of buttery sauce and spice. …Mmmm, this post is making me hungry! 

Now, yesterday, I had a new kind of shrimp and grits, and the grits just won me over! The menu read “pimento cheese grits,” and when the plate was set before me, I was surprised to see the grits had a fried batter around them! Oh. My. Word! They were delicious!! These grits had actually been cooked thoroughly and then “pattied” and fried to a yummy perfection! I am sorry that I didn’t take a pic of them before I devoured them! At another restaurant, several weeks ago, in Charleston, SC, I had a dish of shrimp and grits that was also scrumptious. This dish I did capture a pic, and you can see it below. The chef prepared it by sautéing the shrimp in a lobster butter sauce. Oh. Wow. It was yummy! 

So, as you can see just by the two photos I have included, as well as, these different descriptions, shrimp and grits can come in a variety of ways, but you will never know which you like best until you try it! So, be adventurous. Try a new dish, and, if at first, it isn’t so wonderful, just simply try, and try again until you have reached the plate you just can’t live without!! Lol. 😉  

Shrimp and Grits at The Oyster Room Restaurant at Foley Beach, SC (near Charleston, SC)

Advertisements

Catch and Release

Catch and release…joy, love, peace, anger, resentment, pain. 

Our youngest son loves to fish. He loves to go out, take his fishing pole, cast a line, and catch whatever there is to catch! It doesn’t matter if it’s little fish, medium size, or a great big one… Although, he loves the great big catch! That boy just loves to fish! 

I started thinking…Ya know, we need to be more like this is life! What if we were so eager to “fish” for the good things in life…like love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness? What if we cast our lines big, expecting those great big wonderful “fish” to latch on for good? 

What if we learned to release those bad things that don’t amount to anything? What if we let go of those thoughts of jealousy, those memories that bring bitterness, those concerns and fears that keep us from chasing our dreams? …what if??

How different would our everyday lives be if we “caught” only what was good and “released” all that was bad? How different would we react to those around us? How different would our legacy be to those comintbg behind us?

Sure, life doesn’t always being great stuff everyday. There are storms that come, but it rains for a good fisherman, too! Yet, I’ve heard that’s when some of the best fishing is done, in the rain! You’ve just got to know what to catch and keep and what to release back into the lake!

Why not try it today? Put on your greatest fishing attire. Pull out that sparkling rod and reel, and set out on a fishing adventure of “Catch and Release.” Catch only good…Release all that’s bad, and see how different your life can be today. 🙂

What’s Inside?

  
When you’re upset, you upset what’s really in you. -Ann Voskamp

You’ve heard it said, “When you spill the glass, you see what’s inside.” If sweet tea is inside, you see tea, and if it’s sour milk, you surely don’t get sweet tea! 😉 This is so true for each of us. No matter how pretty of a face we paint on, no matter how many smiles we flash, if our character is ugly, when pressures come, (and they will!) ugly is what will come out! 

In the moments of stress, it’s never a matter of what we know, who we know, or even what we’ve learned. It’s a matter of what we’ve allowed inside our hearts, what we’ve processed and what we’ve consumed. What is within our hearts is what is brought to the surface when we face hard times. 

I long for good to flow when I’m spilled out. I don’t like sour milk, never have; yet, when pressures arise, sometimes, sour is all that’s left. It gets messy. I long for purity. I long for less mess, and I’m really working on this; I truly am. 

Yet, I have found that it’s not a matter of the mind. You can’t just make yourself act better. You can’t just decide in your mind, “Ok, today will be different. No more spills. No more sour milk. Today, I shall be on a better course. I shall be better!” No, it’s not just a simple making up of the mind, and all is well. It’s a matter of the heart, and, oh, how that heart can be so stubborn sometimes…

I can determine in my mind that I will not doubt. I will not grow angry. I will not be afraid. I can convince myself that this time will be different. I will be different; however, if I’ve only convinced my mind, and I’ve not dealt with my heart, that heart will rebel. That heart will even revolt. When the heat of the moment comes, and my guard is let down, that heart will adamantly revert back to its comfort zone of fear, doubt, anger, or whatever emotion consumes it at the time. 

You see, the heart holds all the wounds, all the pain and all the joy. The heart is full of all the emotion, all the wonder, all fear. When troubles come, it’s really the heart that speaks, and this is why it is always a matter of that stubborn heart which determines what will spill out. 

This is why Jesus longs to rule our hearts. If He can hold our hearts, He can change our mind. He can transform our will. He can even change the world. If He can have our hearts surrendered to His will, He can consume our whole being. 

If we want the inside to be purified, to be empty of the mess, to be as pretty as the outside we paint, we must lend Him our hearts. We must surrender our emotions, our pains, our wounds. We must allow His living waters to wash over our hearts. We must let Him heal us from the inside out, and then, we won’t have to worry when the glass is spilt. There will be no sour to pour. It will only be full of fresh, living water, flowing from His heart to ours, and out to the world. 

“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.” Matthew 23:27-28


**Note: I did not take picture, nor do not I own picture. Simply taken from google search. 

Answer to Friday’s Angle #17

Did you guess correctly yesterday??

   
It is the window power button on my truck! 🙂

 

Hope you had fun! See you next week! 🙂

Friday’s New Angle #17

Heres another Friday’s Angle for you!

Enjoy!

  
Remember, the answer will be posted this time tomorrow. 

Thanks for playing! 🙂

Cloud of Lies

You walk around in a cloud. 

Voices are heard. Faces are seen. 

Yet you never realize where they lean. 

You paint a smile. You wave a hand. 

Yet you never recognize where they land. 

     

They run ever fast, but never arrive. 

Opinions are spoken. Agendas are made. 

Yet they never hear truth inside the raid. 

They fight. They scramble for their own selfish sight. 

Yet they never listen to anything that is right. 


We spill out the words, never making sense. 

Abuses are dreamt. Fantasies are taken. 

Yet standards of honesty and peace are forsaken

We believe. We trust this is the better way. 

Yet our children are being raised within the broken fray. 


You walk around in a cloud. 

Voices are heard. Faces are seen. 

Yet you never know death is knocking; all is serene. 

You live your life thinking this is the best. 

Yet you never surrender; all are trying to find rest. 


Penned – MG – 6/10/15

Wednesday’s Ode #18

  I love unique doorways…

  or maybe I should say entryways…   Either way, I love openings that make me wonder what is beyond…    Who has stepped beyond the door?   Who has entered there?

  Who might be coming back?

 

Shimmers Like Gold

       

The lake shimmers like gold.

 

I drove across the lake today. As I looked at the water it seemed to be shimmering, as if it was a pile of diamonds glowing in the sun. It was simply beautiful. 

This moment reminded me that there’s beauty all around us, all the time. We just have to open our eyes and see it. We can get so busy in our everyday drives, in our daily routines, and in our weekly habits that we miss the beauty that God placed right in our midst. Do you ever just stop to actually smell the roses? Do you ever just pause at night and look up at the stars? 

God placed us here amongst His creation to enjoy it and to praise Him for it. Yet too often these days, I think, we are too busy to even see it clearly. Sure we might pause for half a millisecond to watch a bird on a branch, to hear it chirp it’s little song, but then, we have appointments to make, things to do, people to see, and then we leave, missing out on its beautiful praise. 

We must stop. We must get away. We must get alone until we’re not alone anymore. We must seek our Maker, and then, we’ll be able to see and hear what He has for us. His plans, His creation, His ways are so much clearer when we step out from among the chaos of our lives and step into His presence. I think I’d like to see Him today in the shimmering gold on the lake. I’d like to hear Him in the rustling of the leaves. Would you like to join me?

“Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad; let the sea resound, and all that is in it.  Let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them; let all the trees of the forest sing for joy. Let all creation rejoice before the Lord…”   Psalm 96:11-13a

Tunnel Light

  

I wonder if the closer you get to the end, the more light that you will see?

 

Do you feel you’re in a tunnel today? Keep walking. Keep pushing. Keep going. You can make. You will make it. I have faith in you. 

Most importantly, God has faith in you, and He is cheering you on. You are His. He created you, and He loves you, no matter who you are, where you’ve been or where you are right now. Trust Him, and just believe. 

Romans 8:31, “What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?”

Answer to Friday’s Angle #16

Were you able to figure out the New Angle yesterday??

   It is reflected bathroom lights off a countertop. 😉