How Do You Spell Culinary Bliss With Five Letters?


Este restaurante es la bomba! The food here is incredibly good, and the service is outstanding. This is my husband’s favorite restaurant, and we actually ended up eating here 5 times during our stay.


The thing in the middle covered with sauce is a fish called Paiche. This was so delicious! I ate it on my first and second visit to Nanka.


This is duck with a very rich adobo sauce and two corn tamales. This was absolutely delicious too, but when combined with a lucuma frappucino which I had later in the afternoon and Arroz Thai Con Pollo that I ate it the evening…………………let’s just say that my stomach wasn’t too happy during the night. 🙂


I had this dish on our last visit to Nanka. It is artichoke stuffed ravioli.


If you are ever blessed to go to Lima, Peru, you must go to this restaurante. Es la bomba!

An Old Fashioned Thanksgiving


Dear autumn time brings splendid holiday
in lovely shades of ginger and saffron.
Bright leaves announce Thanksgiving’s on its way.
Our crimson blessings we reflect upon.
With pies of pumpkin and amber chiffon,
cinnamon sentiments filling the air;
sweet loved ones and friends have gathered so near.

There’s frolic, feasting till the evening tide.
Of food and fellowship we’ve had our fill.
The umber sky, sun’s fire does now hide.
Our hearts are filled with gladness and good will
which does not dissipate with autumn’s chill.
And though Thanksgiving Day has come and gone,
the many colored memories live on.


The Burnt Offering of Thanksgiving

I just wanted to share a memory of our most comical Thanksgiving which took place almost 9 years ago. My sister is actually making the stuffing again this year. We’ll see if history repeats itself.

Write At Home

“Did you take this out of the fireplace?”

“It tastes like you crushed some Virginia Slims in it.”

Jennifer just ran to the bathroom to spit it out.

These were just a few of the reactions to the burnt stuffing my sister brought over to my house on Thanksgiving.  Have you ever cooked something that just really bombed?  Such was the case with Kiki’s stuffing. (Kiki is my sister Karen’s nickname.) However, this Thanksgiving tragedy quickly turned into comedy.  All day long we cracked jokes about this smoky sidedish.  My brother-in-law(Kiki’s husband) assured us that he was going to chuck the whole pot out the window as they drove over a particular bridge on their way home.  You might think we’re weird, but this really created a great Thanksgiving memory that none of us present will ever forget.  Everything else my sister made was wonderful. She cooked a moist turkey with delicious…

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New Food Page

I met a minister’s wife in December who shared with me a special “diet” that she has been on for a number of years. Actually, it’s more of a lifestyle change. After listening to her, asking her questions and doing some reading on my own, I decided that during the month of January I would try going on a mostly raw vegan diet. It has been a challenging but fun experiment. I am finding that I have more energy and am enjoying this change more than I thought I would. With that in my mind, I have renamed the former “Favorite Family Recipes” page to Raw and Cooked Vegan Dishes and will be sharing some of the recipes I have made. Feel free to visit the page, and if you decide to try any of the recipes, let me know what you think. Bon appetit!

Makings Of A Sensational Sunday

I am still rejoicing in God’s blessings this past Sunday. First of all, I’m excited because children’s church has been going well. We have some kids that are coming consistently now, and I’m believing that God is going to do great things in their lives.  In our family worship service we had 4 brand new visitors. One of the ladies that came lives only a couple of blocks away from the church. She told me afterwards that she has been around to several churches in the area but couldn’t find what she wanted. “I have been fed today!” she joyfully exclaimed to me.  I give God all the glory, because that’s what we want. People need to be nourished on the pure, unadulterated Word of God.


Finally, finally, I know how to make good Spanish rice and refried beans. Another minister’s wife that we were with on New Year’s Day gave Jen and I a tutorial on how to do it.   So on Sunday, I made the beans, Jen made the rice, and my husband made his homemade salsa.  Mmm mmm good!  Muy muy bien! I love good Mexican food. In fact, I enjoy it so much that I wouldn’t mind at all if this is what the Lord would want to have at the Marriage Supper of the Lamb! (Revelation 19:9) I’m looking forward to more of those beans after I go off this 3 day diet.  LOL

Christmas Banquet 2008



These are a couple of the centerpieces(before the finishing touch of 3 tapered candles were added to each) that our ladies made for the tables at our 3rd annual Christmas banquet.  This year, we held our banquet at our new church facility in downtown Oakley.  We ate tri-tip, chicken, killer baked beans, Caesar salad and dinner rolls, provided by a local caterer.  It was all so delicious.  For dessert, we had a Tres Leche cake from Safeway.  If you have never tried this cake, I would highly recommend it.  It is the bomb! 

Our special speaker this year was Rev. Joe Savala who pastors in Ontario, Oregon. Brother Savala is one of the funniest preachers I know. I feel like the Lord uses his humor to put people at ease and help open their hearts to receive the Word of God.  Did you know that there are people in this world who don’t like to bathe?  Here are some of the excuses Rev. Savala shared with us on why some people do not bathe.

1. They were forced to do it as a child.

2. They tried bathing once and decided it wasn’t for them.

3. They just don’t feel the need to bathe often.

4. They think they are already clean enough.

5. There are hypocrites out there that bathe.

6.  There are so many soaps out there that they just aren’t sure which one to use.

After sharing with us the reasons why some people do not bathe, Rev. Savala brought home the point that these same excuses can apply to why people do not go to church.  I like to think of what he said as a gentle tug on the heart of those who were there that do not go to church or only go sporadically.   One lady who attends our church brought her neighbor and daughters to the banquet, and this neighbor lady told her friend that she wanted to come to church with her on Sunday.  She was not able to come on Sunday due to health problems, but her youngest daughter came to children’s church and had a good time.  I praise God for that and am looking forward to more coming.

Do or DIEt

There comes a time in some of our lives

due to the things we ate,

our expanded girth tells us that now is the time

to lay aside some weight.


I’ll be cutting back on food drastically

at the crack of dawn tomorrow.

I’d sure appreciate your prayers

in this, my time of sorrow.


It’s grapefruit and toast for breakfast;

and tuna and toast at noon,

if I stick to my guns and this diet

you’ll be seeing less of me soon.


With varied fruits and vegetables

and 3 ounces of meat at dinner,

and 64 ounces of water a day

how could I not get thinner?


So, I’m laying aside all my junk food.

Yes, I will be an absolute saint.

But please, could you send up some prayer for me?

I’m beginning to feel quite faint!


This is for real.  Monday is the big day.  My husband and I are going on a diet!  Aren’t you just excited for us?  Thursday night after Bible study, some friends of ours shared with us a diet that they have been trying that a friend of theirs got from her doctor.  You do the diet for 3 days a week and eat normally for the other 4 days.  This is what we get to eat the first day.


Breakfast – 1/2 grapefruit, 1 slice toast, 2 tbsp. peanut butter


Lunch – 1/2 can tuna, l slice toast


Dinner – 3 oz. any meat (we’re going to have steak, seasoned with salt and pepper only), 1 cup steamed string beans, 1 cup beets, 1 small apple, 1 cup vanilla icecream. (the reward for eating beets)


Of course, you’re supposed to drink 8 glasses of water a day too.  Diet sodas are not allowed and you can only drink decaffienated coffee with sugar substitute while on the diet.  Diets aren’t really something incredibly enjoyable, but I really want to try and make this fun.  Thus, the silly poem and this post. (and hopefully I’ll feel more accountable now that I’ve announced it to the blogging world)


You all pray our strength in the Lord.  🙂

A Full Weekend

This has been a very full but good weekend for me.  Yesterday, my daughter and another friend Eva from our church and her daughter went to a Mother/Daughter banquet at a sister church.  I had been asked to speak at this banquet a few weeks ago.  I’m not really a great public speaker, but I did pray about this and felt like the Lord gave me something to share with the ladies.  I don’t speak at functions very often, but whenever I do, my mind always wanders back to the first time I ever had to give a speech.  I can’t remember exactly what grade I was in, but our teacher assigned everyone in class to do an oral book report.  At that time, I was reading a lot of Bobbsey Twins mysteries, so I decided to do my book report on one of these mysteries.  As I stood in front of the class, I opened my mouth to speak, and nothing came out.  It was as if I had been suddenly struck dumb, and it seemed like I stood there speechless for eternity.  My merciful teacher saw my plight and told me in her kind voice that it was okay and that I could try again tomorrow.  I sat down feeling very relieved, and somehow(miraculously) I was able to speak the next day and deliver my book report.  Anyhow, things went well at the banquet, and as usual, the Lord came to my rescue and helped me. 

Later that evening, we were invited to a birthday party for Eva’s daughter Bell.  Eva really went all out for this and made her killer potato salad, corn on the cob,  a giant bowl of fresh fruit and glop(a combination of pistachio pudding, nuts, marshmallows & other ingredients which slip my mind right now-it’s yummy!).  Her husband barbecued chicken on the grill.  This was all very good, but the crowning jewel of the evening was the cake that Eva made.  I’m hoping that Eva will post a picture of it on her blog, because it is hard for me to describe.  The cake was shaped like a castle, and it was very impressive.  Not only did it look good, but it tasted wonderful too.  The homemade buttercream frosting was not sicky sweet like the kind you would get at the grocery store.  It was just right.  We had a nice time and left there absolutely stuffed.  I must confess that I really pigged out there.  I hardly ate anything at the banquet earlier, because I was nervous about speaking, so I made up for not eating much there!

We always try to do something special at church on Mother’s Day to honor our mothers.  Eva not only makes beautiful cakes, but she is also good at putting together gift baskets, so she made some up to give to the mothers.  We also gave some carnations out too, because I don’t know of any lady who does not like to receive flowers.  I was presented with a sweet Mother’s Day card, a beautiful Azalea plant and a special Mother’s Journal in which I can record stories from my life to pass on to my children.  I don’t feel like I deserve to get a special gift every year for Mother’s Day, but I do appreciate the thoughtfulness and love that is expressed through it.

After church we came home and my husband fixed me a scrumptuous, sumptuous meal.  You better get a bib on because you might start to drool.  🙂   We had grilled steak, pan seared sea scallops, stuffed baked potatoes, my husband’s special seasoned grilled vegetables and French bread.  In a little while from now, we’ll be having strawberry shortcake for dessert.  The kids helped too with setting the table and kitchen clean up afterwards.  My son has promised me a foot massage before bed tonight, and he is going to read me a selection or two from The Best Loved Poems of the American People. (his idea, because he knows I like this book)

All in all it has been a wonderful weekend, and I feel like a very blessed woman indeed!