Have I mentioned the significance of September 1st yet?
Well, in South Africa we celebrate it as the first day of Spring.
And each year since 2013, my husband & I also celebrate our wedding anniversary on the same date (exactly two years before that, to the day, he asked me to marry him). It has less to do with Spring Time being synonymous with "the birds & the bees", and more to do with the fact that Franscois chose this date because he'll remember it easier than any other one.
Four years this Friday. The poopies & I are such lucky ladies!
God does not tempt. He tests. We should know this already because the Bible told us so. Centuries ago. ["Remember how the Lord your God led you all the way in the wilderness ... to humble and test you in order to know what was in your heart..." - Deut. 8:2]
Now if you didn't know about this, or if you keep forgetting, don't feel guilty. Same here - if it wasn't for Lysa TerKeurst's First5 teaching on Deuteronomy 8 last year, I'd probably still be confused. In it, she asked, "Might God be using these humbling circumstances to get you to a place of deep and unshakable trust in Him?" What a #TruthBomb moment, right?
Now before I chatter on, let's make a mental note NOT to confuse His spiritual tests with temptation, though. According to the main definitions on Dictionary.com, there is a clear distinction between the two words:
tempt /tɛmpt/ verb ~ to attempt to persuade or entice to do something, esp something morally wrong or unwise.
Fisgard. It sounds like something out of a Kim Wilkins novel, but it's actually the first lighthouse built on Canada's West Coast.
"Built by the British in 1860, when Vancouver Island was not yet part of Canada, Fisgard's red brick house and white tower has stood faithfully at the entrance to Esquimalt harbour. Once a beacon for the British Royal Navy's Pacific Squadron, today Fisgard still marks home base for the Royal Canadian Navy." [- Fisgard Website]
This wasn't my first tango with a cheesecake.
First time around (a few months ago) it came out all cracked and spotty-looking, despite the fact that I had set my sights on the simplest recipe I could find.
Before my second attempt I changed tactics. I did some online research before firing up the mixer and it totally paid off! No cracks, an even colour all around and a way creamier texture.
I'm THE WORST at absolutely everything in the kitchen, so to all my fellow Kitchen Catastrophes out there - here's what I did differently for Baby Brother's 21st birthday lunch @ Mom's: Cream Cheese - looks like Philadelphia Cream Cheese disappeared from South African shelves, so I used 3 tubs of LANCEWOOD® Full Fat Cream Cheese instead.Cookie Crumbs - using my mortar, with a double-lining of cling wrap to keep the crumbs from sticking to it, I pestled a box of BAKERS Nuttikrust® biscuits until reduced to fine crumbs. (We have a granite set like this one at home and I was able t…
I will never be a summer person. The sunburn, heat and sweat... Yuck! It quickly turns me into a puddle of lethargy every year. Now Winter, Oh My!
Snuggles become cosier and everything smells crisper.
When I feel that chill in the air, I want to move and do things. The tingling cold always gets me going (and moving around is a sure way of staying warm).
Suffering from depression is like stumbing around in familiar territory.
Just as you catch a glimpse of an exit, you take a wrong turn and 'round and 'round you go.
In her teaching on Deuteronomy 2 'Turning North' Lysa TerKeurst wrote, "He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear".
I find enormous comfort in this revelation. After their exodus from Egypt, the Israelites found themselves wandering the desert for 40 years. They must've felt hopelessly lost most of the time, but God always gives you a way out. For them, it was Moses. For me, there are numerous healthier options.
From an environmental point of view, there are many things I should be doing differently (or not doing at all). That does not mean that I've stopped trying.
I'm still #WithNature.
The fact that people are such assholes, reaffirms this choice every day.
We're in love with Alyssa Rivers' Creamy Tuscan Garlic Chicken.
I found it on Pinterest, saved it, and haven't stopped referring to it again and again.
I'm a terrible cook. I always forget something, or take shortcuts when following recipes, and usually that means the whole thing implodes. Not the case with this batch of deliciousness.
There are a few differences between the creative genius' version and ours (some you'll notice straight away, others maybe not): The original recipe calls for garlic powder & chopped spinach (amongst other things). We have a brand-spanking-new garlic press, so fresh garlic (3tsp) was a "necessity" & I bought the wrong spinach, so we used baby spinach leaves.Her kitchen, camera and photography skills are miles ahead of our own.We should've browned the chicken a liiiiiittle longer.Our sauce is a little too yellow. Not sure why, but it still tastes great!!!
You can serve the creamy chicken with whatever you feel…
So hubby's birthday is on Star Wars Day.
Reaching the end of his thirties, it does mean that parties have fizzled out a bit (it takes us all a little longer to recover from late nights and hangovers). In other words, for the occasion this year, he decided on watching ALL the Star Wars episodes on a screen in the backyard.
Yes. Nerdy. Very nerdy.
Buuuut I was okay with it. It meant they wouldn't be tempted to drink & drive, and I'm always for that.
He worked hard getting comfy (old, scrappy) couches moved to the lawn, setting up the projector screen, etc. He's going to kill me for saying this, but it was just so cute seeing him be so creative. He had me totally invested in his birthday "party" idea.
A truly magnificent structure.
At 68 metres, Vittoria dwarfs Slangkop (South Africa's tallest), and the copper version of Giovanni Mayer's Winged Victory statue is just the cherry on top.
The fact that the lighthouse aides navigation on the seas at night comes as no surprise to me. What I do find notable is the fact that it was built to commemorate the Allies' fallen sailors of World War I.
The construction project was completed on 24 May 1927 and the lighthouse is still being used today.
As I first read through Deuteronomy, it seemed a neverending list of laws.
In reality, God was using Moses to show the Israelites how every choice they'd make would have a consequence.
Krista Williams' teaching on Deuteronomy 27, Life Is Not A Coin Toss, brought this home for me. I realised that these lists of blessings and curses weren't just strict ultimatums. They were guiding God's people by showing them the consequences of each choice before them: Follow God's Word, or turn away from Him and go your own way, alone.
You see, we always have a choice. In any and every situation, we have the freedom to make our own decisions on how to proceed. This freedom is a luxury gifted by God. Use it wisely.
Enya's lyrics are as hard to hear as any metal I've ever listened to.
Although, I must admit that I've always been mishearing lyrics. For years I was convinced that Def Leppard was singing a song about Lesbian Rock (whatever the hell that may be?!).
As an example, let's have a look at Orinoco Flow - the first Enya song I ever heard:
The Cow and the Calf. As I ventured into the land of lighthouses, I quickly learned that lighthouses all have different looks. Some are tall, some are short, some are bright, some are stocky, some aren't even round.
While some details were added as a result of the architectural trends during the years they were built, their sizes and locations all come down to visibility, which is also the reason why the tower of St Catherine's lighthouse is shorter than when it was originally built.
In 1875 it was decided to reduce its height by 13 metres because the light at the top was frequently shrouded in mist.
Notice the little tower to the left in the photo above? No. This is not a second lighthouse tower. This is what the locals refer to as the Calf - the location of the fog signal house until they stopped using it in 1987 (it was moved to this second little tower from the cliff's edge after cracks continued to appear).
Other Noteworthy Dates:
From 1323 to 1530, lights were shone…
The Mykines Holm lighthouse was built in 1909, but it wasn't the Faroes' first.
The first lighthouse was lit way over on the other side of the Faroe Islands in 1782, on the northern part of Nolsoy.
Towards the end of the second industrial revolution (a few years before the first world war), it looks like the construction bug bit the Faroe people, because they built the first bridge over Holmgjogv, as well as the first path from Mykines Bygd(the village) to Mykines Holm (the lighthouse islet) in the same year that they constructed Mykines Holm Lighthouse.
There have been twenty-one lighthouses on the islands to date (give or take a few that had to be rebuilt over the years).
During World War II all three manned lighthouses - Akraberg, Mykines and Nolsoy, were attacked (bombed). After the war ended in 1945, it took three years to set things in order, rebuild, and clean up the islands.
Did You Know?
Apparently the summer nights on the Faroe Islands is so light that they shut dow…
Annual check up done. I smell cigs and candy...
We're all going to die, but I'd like to die a little slower. To do that, I have to shake my addiction to sugar and nicotine.
That Sugar Film opened my eyes to the effect that sugar has on my body and a recent pregnancy scare made me rethink smoking. If I can worry about how bad smoking would be for a baby, why can't I face how bad it is for me?
A lighthouse doesn't have to be real for me to love it.
Take this week's lighthouse pick for example. It's obviously digital art and not a true photograph, but as I gaze at it, I can smell the salt on the foamy waves and feel the gusts of wind tugging on my hair. I imagine myself standing on the shore, staring at that light and letting the world fall away.
There's something beautiful about letting nature do with you what it will. The Holy Spirit is my guiding light, and I will reach the final destination when my time has come.
Until then He keeps me safe.
By the way, I've searched everywhere I could think of, but I only found this 'lighthouse in a storm' picture on various wallpaper websites. Do any of you know who created it?
Construction started in 1887, but the lighthouse officially came to be used in September 1890, replacing three older lighthouses.
It stands in the middle of Southwold (on the Suffolk Heritage Coast) where it is still being used today, with tours available to visitors
Mostly, I just slept. (It was a severe bout of Hangover Anxiety.)
Now, now! Before you start saying that I'm making light of a serious mental health issue - I'm not joking. It's a real thing. You can deny it all you want, but the D&A* Brain just doesn't like alcohol as much as we do. It was only after my terrible week that I connected the dots.
As you can see, I'm back on the blog, but I felt that I had to share my latest experience with those of you who don't really understand what it's like for people like us.
Managing my mental health is easier these days (on medication), but that does not mean the dark pit has disappeared. It happens less frequently, but sometimes I turn a corner and fall right in. I miss all the signs, and until last week I never fully understood the havoc partying can wreck on my navigation.
During my teens, I was drinking regularly so there was never a real opportunity for me to experience the lasting effects. Before I could hit…
The original lighthouse was constructed in Bristol, Maine, using saltwater in 1827. It soon started crumbling so in 1835 it had to be replaced with a new structure, built using fresh water. And thank goodness for that! It's gorgeous.
Looking at the rock that slopes downward to the sea, it's quite obvious why this lighthouse was built in the first place. No ship's bow would survive that coastline if it came upon it without warning.
Volunteers open the tower to the public daily between 10:30 am and 17:00 pm, weather permitting, and you can climb it free of charge. That's if you are able to make your way all the way over there. I resign myself to the fact that I can only view it in photographs like the ones I posted here - and with the WebCam.
A Seriously Old Lighthouse
Technically, the Maiden's Tower (aka Kiz Kulesi) is actually just a tower that, for a time, was used as a lighthouse, but still...
The exact construction date isn't known, but according to its website, some sources have dated the origins of the tower structure to go back as far as 341 BC! That, by my standards, is ridiculously old.
Apparently, the tower served many purposes throughout the past 25 centuries. So far, it's been a tax collection office (like a port terminal, controlling ships entering and exiting the harbour), defense fortress, military base, demonstration platform, lighthouse, quarantine hospital, and a radar station (to control sea and air traffic).
Any building this old, won't survive on luck alone, and there have been many restorative operations executed, but on 16 December 1993, another massive restoration project was launched and in 2000 the Tower was finally reopened as a tourist venue where you can now visit the museum, o…