Posts filed under ‘Friday’s Fave Five (FFF)’

Friday’s Fave Five August 11th, 2017

This purple yam ice cream with small chunks of cheese is a delightful discovery. My daughter bought it at a local Asian market.

This week has flown and it is already time to look for five highlights. It is time to count some blessings.

“The hardest arithmetic to master is that which enables us to count our blessings.” ~ Eric Hoffer

ONE. Ube Ice Cream. Trying new foods is such a fun and simple joy.  This particular Ube (purple yam from the Philippines) ice cream is ube queso (with cheese). It is surprisingly good.

TWO. Memorial Service. A much beloved woman, Alice Gibbons, went home to her Saviour. Besides being a caring wife, mom, grandma, friend, (ETC), she was also a pioneer missionary (from the C&MA) in Papua, Indonesia for 40+ years. Alice and her husband, Don, mainly served the people of the stone aged tribe Damal. Alice wrote 2 books, although I have only read one, The People Time Forgot. Her legacy and example will live on as will the sacrifice and love she gave to many, many people.

THREE. Friend Time. My friend, Pam, went with me to Alice’s memorial service which was held in Paradise, CA (Pam’s hometown). Pam moved to SoCal last year and so I haven’t seen much of her. We spent a lot of time talking, eating yummy food, and then seeing Wonder Woman. I can see why Wonder Woman got so many rave reviews.

FOUR. Excursions Planned. One other thing I did in Paradise was visit with another friend, Scotti. We are going on a cruise in the Fall (starting in Madrid, Spain and ending in Barcelona, Spain). We finalized our six excursions. I cannot believe I get to do this!

FIVE. Crisis Intervention Training. I had the opportunity and privilege of attending a three-day course with first responders about . . .

  • Understanding  the basic symptomology of mental illnesses
  • Considerations and tactics for communicating with mentally ill subjects
  • Importance of self-care
  • Identifying signs and symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Reviewing healthy coping habits for first responder stress and self-care

I was reminded again of  how much stress and sacrifice law enforcement personal and police chaplains go through. I was reminded again of how thankful I am for these folks in my community.

Note: I am a pastor and church chaplain. I am grateful for this training because I gained information on how to deescalate a potentially threatening situation and the importance of self-care.

Your Turn . . . Leave a comment, please. Or write your own Friday’s Fave Five and link up at Susanne’s place.

What I am reading . . . 

What I Wrote This Week . . . 



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Friday’s Fave Five August 4, 2017

It is time to look back over a busy week and share five highlights.

It isn’t too late to sign up.

ONE Month of Austen. In 2015 I participated in the Austen in August Reading challenge. It was the first time I had read any books by Jane Austen.  I am doing it again this year because I had such a great time. Here is my post on what I hope to read. #AustenInAugustRBR.



TWO Baptisms. Last Sunday I had the extreme honour and pleasure to baptize two people: Andy and Lucy. It was an emotional and memorable time for each of us. It was special to be able to hear their story of faith and about their commitment to Christ.





THREE Photos for August Break, 2017.  Susannah Conway is hosting this community photograph meme with daily prompts.  The Facebook group is here.  You get to determine how often you participate this month. No stress so come on and join us on Instagram and/or Facebook. Use this hashtag: #augustbreak2017. My instagram account is SusanIZwright.





Kadie (niece), Elizabeth (daughter), Susan (me)

Red bean cake, onion & sausage roll and kelp, mung been soup (Pegasus)

 Progressive Taiwanese Dinner at FOUR Spots: Pegasus Cafe, Snowbee, Vampire Penguin and Gong Cha. My daughter, niece and I spent an enjoyable evening in Little Saigon.

Taro Snow (Vampire Penguin) Most Beautiful.

Avocado fluffy ice (Snowbee) – TASTIEST!

It was fun having “snow,” chicken on skewers and bubble tea (to name a few things). It reminded me of my trip to Taiwan (with Elizabeth) to visit Kadie last January.

5K Fun Run/Walk. This past year I have been walking a WHOLE lot more, in part due to my trip to Taiwan. We walked a LOT every day and there were tons of stairs. So I kept up that pace once I got home.

I liked that this Fun Run/Walk was done to support the Alzheimer’s Association

1,407 people signed up.

Our real time was 1:02:52. It took us a few minutes to get back to the finish line time clock and find a spot where we weren’t in the way..

About a month ago I decided to walk a 5K. I thought I could do this because when I went to the ocean last month, I didn’t have trouble going from the car to our beachside spot.


Part of the Fun Run/Walk was in a cemetery .These morning glories were on an outside fence.

And I was inspired to do this because of the example of two people. MJ Towns is from my church and frequently runs races. And the other person is hiking champ, Faith (blogging friend from FFF). Month after month after month, I’d see their example until I finally decided to follow that example.

I didn’t know you could have such a sign on your back. Next year I will walk in honour of several folks.

Your Turn . . . I linked this post to Susanne’s meme, Friday’s Fave Five. Join us at her place or in the comments down below.


What I Wrote This Week at Fruitful Words . . .

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Friday’s Fave Five July 28

Karrie and I trying to fix this kite so it’ll fly

ONE: Women’s 3rd Annual Beach Trip. 16 ladies from my church carpooled to Ocean Beach in San Francisco. We had a short photography lesson. I based it on this article: 10 iPhone Photography Tips To Quickly Improve Your Photos. I only talked about 9 tips as I know NOTHING about filters.

Then we had a scavenger hunt which included highlights of the lesson, typical beach items and activities one might do at the beach. The following link is the PDF of our OCEAN PHOTO SCAVENGER HUNT CHECKLIST.

We roasted hot dogs and marshmallows for s’mores. We also played in the water, took walks, sat in our chairs chatting, and (tried to) fly a kite (that just didn’t want to be flown). And of course we laughed, a lot.

Walking from the car to the beach has always been tough for me. (My family used to come to this beach each Thanksgiving. We’d bring our meal, firewood, playthings, and warm clothing in order to stay for the day.) The walk is long and because the sand is deep it is tough to slough through it. BUT. But this year it wasn’t so tough. In fact I willingly took 3 trips from the car to our spot.

Rusty is one of the few men who braves our Lunch Bunch. He is a foodie and has great restaurant suggestions.

TWO: Indian Restaurant for PEP Folks. On the 4th Sunday of each month, the seniors of our church (called PEP 55+) go out to lunch together. This past Sunday we went to Aappakadai Indian Restaurant. On Sundays they have a lunch buffet. Even though I don’t eat spicy food (because of a complaining gall bladder), I found plenty of delicious food. It was fun to try new food with a group of long-time friends.

THREE: Encouragement Team Meeting. This is the 2nd time that folks from PEP 55+ gathered to send a card to all the seniors of our church. We prayed for the recipients and we wrote everyone an encouragement on their card. It took the 9 of us a little more than 2 hours to write 97 cards. I am so excited for the cards to be received. It is like we were part of an encouragement flash mob.

There were zinnias in multiple colours: pink, magenta, yellow, white, red, striped, and orange. … My fave is the pink.

FOUR: Mezger Family Zinnia Patch. You can get helpful information from FaceBook. That is where I found out about this couple acre flower farm. The zinnias are free with the caveat that you also cut enough flowers for someone else, preferably a senior citizen.

All you have to do is show up since there are scissors/flower clippers, vases and water. We signed the guest book and perused the 9 or so rows of hardy, colourful zinnias chosen because they ARE hardy and colourful.

Go to this link to read about why Mark Mezger created this beautiful free space. And if you are in the Sacramento area, take your own spontaneous field trip. Oh, sunscreen would probably be a good idea, to bring along.

It was easier to poke in the end of the poles that were made with skewers as opposed to twigs.

FIVE: TP’d with Miniature Tipis. Elizabeth (my daughter) made these tipis in 2009 for an art show. Some mini tipis were made with toilet paper. And some were made with paper towels. Yes, she used a sewing machine to stitch them together.

Years ago she tipi TP’ed a couple of friends’ homes. The other afternoon we used the rest (97 of them) to tipi TP my sister’s yard. Elizabeth is in a decluttering mode and NEEDED to get rid of the plastic, green tub totally filled with these art items.

This is Chip, my 3.5 pound, 12 inch long, apricot, miniature toy poodle modeling next to a tipi.

Here is Elizabeth’s explanation: I’ve been storing these for that eventual art show or for some other special event, when I decided after 8 years of living in the garage it’s time to use them. When the inhabitants saw their custom art installation, (I’m told), it made them smile. Mission accomplished!

Your Turn . . . I am linking this to Susanne’s Friday’s Fave Five. Write your own post of blessings and link up. Or share a blessing or other comment down below.

What I Wrote This Week . . .

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Friday’s Fave Five July 21

Share your Fave Five from last week to help you change the channel to gratitude & peace.

I am trying to walk twice each day. During one of the times, I listen to something. This week I listened to  Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder.

Below is one great idea to hold onto.

“And whenever I’d complain or was upset about something in my own life, my mother had the same advice: “Darling, just change the channel. You are in control of the clicker. Don’t replay the bad, scary movie.” ~  Arianna Huffington.

I am linking this gratitude post to Living to Tell the Story where Susanne hosts Friday’s Fave Five. I am taking firm control of my clicker by recounting five faves from this past week. Three of my days were a study in contrasts.

ONE. Information about crisis and then doing something that prevents it.

I attended an 8 hour Crisis Intervention Training. “The training will provide students with an understanding of the basic symptomology of mental illnesses, considerations and tactics for communicating with mentally ill subjects and will provide an awareness of the community resources available.”

My sister, brother-in-law (both work with Youth for Christ) and I were the only non-law enforcement personnel taking this class. It was an excellent resource. I plan on taking the three day course in August.

I put all the savory fixings on tortilla chips and apple slices. Both were tasty.

That night I met with G.I.G.G.L.E.S (Girls in God who enjoy Growing, Loving, Eating, and Sharing together). We had a nacho bar: savory and sweet (as in Apple Nachos). And then we watched the movie about Mother Teresa, The Letters. Getting together frequently with others (especially with those who have my back) is a way I stay sane. Otherwise I start to believe and act on the lies I tell myself.

TWO. Celebrating someone in death and then another someone in birth. 

One morning I attended a memorial service. Eric passed away too young. However, it was a true celebration of his life. Folks wore tie dye or Give Blood tee shirts (2 meaningful things in his life). Beach balls were tossed around the sanctuary. There were many stories of helping, silliness, and friendship. He loved well and was loved in return. And most importantly, there was a definite peace about Eric’s  final destination, Heaven.

I am celebrating with Frederick’s auntie, Christina.

Later that day, I attended a baby shower. This was a true celebration of life, too – for the baby that is coming, mama, papa, and big sister. There were introductions and conversations about this happy occasion. We played games and laughed and ate delicious mexican food and fresh fruit. And most importantly, we relished in knowing that soon Frederick would join us and be very, very loved.

THREE. Ice cream for breakfast, salad for lunch – all in the company of friends.

#NationalIceCreamDay – Ice cream and church do go together. … In full disclosure, ice cream was eaten in the making of this advertisement.

Sunday was National Ice Cream Day. We celebrated this at my church. Folks brought boxes of their fave ice cream bars. And yes, some of us did ENJOY ice cream for breakfast. Most had it as a morning snack. In any case, my church friends and I were cool. We had fun together. And we ate ice cream together on this once-a-year national day.

Then I went to lunch with one church friend. We both had a salad. Mine was topped with salmon. Not only was the meal nutritious, so was the company. Since I stopped over-seeing KidMin at church, I haven’t visited with Heather. We both ENJOYED our time together and made plans to meet once a quarter.

On one column, I will write in my appointments. I don’t know what the other two columns will hold. Ideas?

FOUR. Turning more dreams into reality via a planner.

“There are some people who live in a dream world, and there are some who face reality; and then there are those who turn one into the other.” Douglas H. Everett

Last week I attended a planner class. Bea and her friend, Katie, gave an Introduction to all Things Planner. I REALLY want to turn more of my (many, many, many) dreams into reality. And I learned that you can also use your planner as a place to document memories. Wow – I’d love to be able to do both in one place.

So the first thing I want to figure out is how to make it work best for me. I have three weeks left of summer. And I want to see if using my planner can help me accomplish more of my Summer Bucket List. And I hope to document (via photos) what I do.

FIVETime for dinner, TV, and a walk.

Julie and I finally made time to spend time together. She recently moved into my apartment complex. Julie made a casserole with quinoa, chicken, broccoli and cheese. YUMMMM. After we had our fill of food AND conversation, we watched 2 episode of a new (to us) series, Time After Time. It involves (time travel (naturally), HG Wells and Jack the Ripper. It is clean and suspenseful. I give it a one scream rating (that is how many times I gave a little, involuntary scream).

This STEP App is addicting. I am loving how motivating it is to compete against myself.

Julie and her two dogs walked me home. Once home I checked my STEPS app and realized I hadn’t made my step goal for the day. Since there was a cool breeze, my daughter willingly joined me and we made time for stepping out.

Well, that’s all the time I have for today. Leave your faves in the comment section below. Or write a post and link up to Friday’s Fave Five.

What I Wrote this Week . . . How Ice Cream is Like Church

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Friday’s Fave Five July 14

ONE.  One-year-old birthday. My youngest grand-daughter is now one. Sienna has a mellow, happy, busy attitude. Mama made her a watermelon cake because Sienna doesn’t prefer sweet. So this cake was very appreciated by our one-year-old. I’ve never had a fruit cake before and I must say I also appreciated it. EDITED TO ADD: Here is the watermelon cake recipe.

The tire is completely gone.

TWO. Two flat tires. How is this a fave? On the passenger side both tires went flat … while I was going west on Hwy 80 … at 65 miles an hour … where traffic was congested! I didn’t hurt myself, anyone else, or my car – other than tires and a rim. … The other tire lost all the rubber but there was no damage to that rim.

The two sisters have matching outfits and LIKE it.

THREE. Three matching dresses. My 4-year-old grand-daughter picked out items for an Operation Christmas Child  shoebox. … I bought 3 matching tee shirts (2 size 4’s and one 12 months) and 1 yard of material. A friend (Lucy) turned the tee shirts into dresses. … One of the 4T dresses will go into the box. … I snapped a photo of my two grand daughters in the other dresses. And I will include that photo with a note in the box as well.

I will make this for Cheryl soon. This is actually a photo of Sienna’s birthday cake.

FOUR. All play and no work for four. Last Sunday the women’s ministry team met just to play, (Bip, Cheryl, Lina and me)! We’ve never done that before.

We had a lovely BBQ, garden grown veggies, and potluck. One of the fave dishes was an asparagus salad (with LOTS of avocado). I bought red skin potato salad from the store and it was surprisingly tasty.

We each gave a one minute speech about something we are passionate about. And we ended our time in the pool. It was a refreshing, encouraging, fun time.

Share your fave moments from this week. Share them in the comments or on your blog.

FIVE. (almost) Five hour meeting with a mentor. I met my mentor, Nancy, in Modesto last week (half-way point for both of us).I had 14 questions I wanted her input on. She said she had all the time I needed. I was so surprised that we talked and prayed for almost 5 hours.

One of the cool things is that she brought up topics, before I did, that were on my list. I.e. How to stay “topped up” for ministry … Chaplain hints (she has been a chaplain for many, many years and I am starting such a program at my church) … and how to love God better.

One way that helps me to love God better, is to stay consistent with a gratitude practice. Friday’s Fave Five is one thing I incorporate into my gratitude practice.

Your Turn . . .  Leave a comment about a fave or anything you read.

What I Wrote this Week . . .

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Friday’s Fave Five July 7

“Staying in a state of gratitude opens one’s eyes to the miracles happening around us all the time,” Michelle Rusk.

Yep – miracles are around all the time. Now is my opportunity to post five of them from my past week for Friday’s Fave Five. Link up your own post at Susanne’s Living to Tell the Story. Or leave a comment with your own list.

ONE. Stepping up! I have been able to reach my walking goal 6/7 days (10,000 steps). I want to get to 15,000 steps a day so that I am in good walking shape for the Fall when I go to Spain.

Grandma time is always a fave.

TWO. FamilyTime. I went camping with family over the holiday weekend. We went to Gerle Creek Campground. The weather was great. The food was great. And the company was “greater.” And not only did I get to read, I also got to have plenty of grandma time.

THREE. Replacement keys. I recently lost my car key – the one with the remote clicker. I checked prices and it was too much so I decided to live with the “inconvenience” of manually unlocking the doors and trunk. A friend convinced me to go to the dealership and do you know, it was a decent price! SOLD.

This daily chore is fast & easy.

FOUR. New crop. I live in an apartment so what crop could I be growing? Sprouts! They are easy to grow .

  • For four days rinse twice a day.
  • Keep in a dark place.
  • On the fourth day put them in indirect light for a couple of hours.
  • Harvest!
  • Eat them in a salad, on a sandwich or even in a smoothie.

I took 15 photos. Thankfully one photo was good.

FIVE. Fireworks. We came home from the camping trip in plenty of time to have a nap and do a few chores before meeting up with other family for fireworks. We watched them from a local park. And WOW – they were spectacular.

Afterwards my brother-in-law and a niece lit the fireworks from a box they bought. The neighbors across the street were also lighting theirs at the same time. Double the show for a GREAT price. I am amazed at how good home fireworks can be.

Finally, I am grateful for what the fireworks represent: freedom. I am grateful for the puritans’ and the Founding Fathers’ courage and perseverance. I am grateful for all the women and men in uniform for their courage and perseverance. I am grateful to live in this free society, even though many problems exist.

Happy and blessed Friday’s Fave Five!


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5 Reasons I Love Social Media (FFF)

June 30th is Social Media Day and it is also Friday’s Fave Five. So I thought I would combine the two and share why I am grateful for social media.

ONE. Prayer Points. Many times I find out about life events on social media (especially Facebook) before I do via the phone or face-to-face.

  • Birthday/anniversary
  • Cancer announcement/last day of cancer announcement
  • Chronic pain/sudden illness
  • Graduation/loss of employment
  • Hatred/love

I saw all of these things this past week and I prayed for each one. So I can better love on people in my life, this is one of the first things I do each morning.

TWO. Share Information. Most of the folks on my Facebook list are church folks.

  • Therefore it is a GREAT way to advertise what’s going on.
  • My teams and I (PEP and Women’s Ministry) create event pages.
  • We have groups for PEP, Women’s Ministry and Operation Christmas Child  (OCC) Projects (sewing/crafting).
  • I share photos from the things we do together.
  • I highlight what people at CNC are doing. That way we can appreciate them. And get involved, if that interests us.

THREE. New Ideas. I belong to Facebook feeds that cover a gamut of areas: OCC, crafts, theology, authors, education, travel, diabetes news, Spanish, fasting and Dan Rather. (He is the only “political thing” I follow.) Of course there are a bajillion recipes that get shared. I have even tried a few and pinned a TON.

I use Twitter as a way to get world news and information. (I use Facebook mainly as a way to get personal news from friends.)

FOUR. Scrapbooking Life. There are many times that I post on Facebook because I WANT to remember this information. I want to document something from my life or from the life of someone important to me. I used to do scrapbooking. I probably won’t ever do that again. However, one of these days, I am going to print off a book that has all the posts from one year. In my ideal world, I would do that for every year I am on Facebook.

FIVE. Family Photos & Updates. Honestly, this is my favourite reason to have social media (Facebook). I LOVE seeing what my family is up to. Checking FB for my family is the last screen time thing I do each night. I want to see if there is something new that I can think about before I go to bed.

Your Turn . . . What are your favourite reasons to be on social media?

Related Posts from Fruitful Words . . .

Related Post from the internet . . . 
  • Facebook – COMMITMENT
  • LinkedIn – REPUTATION
  • Google+ – VISIBILITY
  • Quora – KNOW-HOW
  • Pinterest – PASSION
  • Instagram – EXPRESSIVENESS
 This is the 18th and last post (most likely) in the “5 Reasons I Love . . .” Series. Go here for the original post which explains how this idea came about. The previous post is 5 Reasons I Love Spring.

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