God’s Grace during Breakdown

The day was hot as a steaming cup of Folgers coffee. The Kansas winds were drifting over the plains with a brilliant sun glistening down on the road ahead.

Going home seemed like such a peculiarly since I had been gone so long.

Yesterday, when we started off, we had a truly epic beginning to our road trip back to P.A. Packed to the brim with, in retrospect, too many of the boxes filled with books and bagpipes.

Breaking down at a Casey’s in Chillicothe, MO, just one State over from where we started.

By God’s grace we had the assistance of many passer-by’s to diagnose and get are car to the Walmart across the way.

But just only there as my fiancé had to keep his foot on the accelerator all the way. If the accelerator wasn’t on the car would stop—dead in its tracks. And the car started going hay-wire right around the curb going into the auto part of the Walmart.

But, by the grace of God, the mechanics helped us find the right part and stayed after hours to fix our car. Oh my goodness friends we were feeling so blessed!!

So, down the road we went new battery in tow and an improved air conditioner humming away.

Luckily, we arrived in one piece. Only to find that the garage had already closed and the mechanics were locking up the place for the night.

The mechanic told us where to find the part and said he’d leave the tools out for us. Low and behold though he stated and put our battery back to humming. Thankfully though not literally humming. That was done by the huge canvas bag strapped to the top of the car that made this raspy humming sound all the trip. 😂

The fact that that mechanic stayed overtime to help us was truly Gods hand in our trip.

Wow, folks God is so good!

So, with intact battery, we began again with ,“Snowball” the car, rolling our way across the prairie. With the cold A/C purring away and our favorite broadcast, Dan Bongino playing.

Pushing through MO at a good pace we began to notice the A/C not working as well as it had been.

Then the clock started blinking.

Then, the seatbelt deactivation sign came in as well as the check engine sign.

Gulp.

Thankfully, we were on a highway with a good wide shoulder and we’re able to safely pull off.

So stuck again.

God’s grace helped us then again with the blessing of my fiancé having AAA. With roadside assistance, thank the good Lord.

This is the real crazy part so far. As Kyril was talking in the phone with AAA a car pulled up behind us. I was thinking wow, AAA is fast!

It was a good Christian person stopping in the road to see if we needed help. Folks, this was truly a beautiful time when a stranger and I bent our heads on the side of the highway and prayed for the road ahead and safety on our trip.

As, he’s leaving, a cop pulls up to see what’s wrong. He asks us if we need help too. Then the county sheriff pulls up behind, apparently the first police officer who’d pulled off to help was out of his county. And they both wanted to stay and help. So we had an incredible and funny conversation with the local police sharing a few jokes and chatting it up about sports, recent happenings and life.

It was truly a surreal experience to have so many people come to our aid.

Then the tow truck pulled up and the police officers stayed until the truck was driving away. I have just been so blown away by the generosity we’ve experienced throughout this town.

The tow truck driver took us to the local hotel where we slept very well after a truly exhausting day.

The tow truck driver was so kind he even came into the hotel to make sure we had a room offering in advance that he’d drive us the 20 min down to the other hotel if this one was full. Wow, what charity!

The local repair shop had their hands full this morning but generously took a diagnostic on our car when we showed up. The alternator was shot. So, after a long day hiking up and down the town even crossing a highway to get to where we needed. We found a Casey’s to get some lunch at.

As we were sitting outside enjoying “lunch” and discussing our situation a woman walked up to us to help. She asked us if we needed anything and gave us directions to the nearest food/rest places. Then she went back to her car and we began heading over to where she’d advised us to go. She then jumped out of her car and came up to us handing my fiancé money saying “This will buy you lunch”. This was just such a true act of Christian charity.

We feel so blessed!

Adventures of Maggie: Day Stress, God’s Strength Helps, New Shoes are Good too…

This morning is the second day of my Novena. I have subscribed to the Corpus Christi Novena by John-Paul & Annie I suggest you give it a look. Corpus Christi has passed as it was June 3rd this year. It is such a joyful way to begin your day!

Ok, so today hit me with a little too much stress.

My feet have been aching and swelling in the heat especially when confined to shoes. The soles of my HOKA shoes have been going flat. Comfortable shoes to fit my feet cost so it’s always somethin’ I just gotta bite the bullet on buying. Because sometimes the shoes even if they are good semi-orthopedic shoes don’t fit me correctly.

But finally after much deliberation I made a shoe purchase. Also, a shoe company that in the past has given me soo much comfort when walking. New Balance, great shoes, great comfort. I ordered the NB Nergize Sport. Yes, it does say sport–I will not be competing in any sports save walking.

Hurrah!!

I bought them directly from the New Balance site.

So, I’m standing on tip-toe to receive my package in the mail!!

Hurrah for comfortable shoes and New Balance!

Blessing #5: Sunday Southern Spread

This evening my fiancé and I are cooking a proper Southern spread for my parents. My dad will I think be very impressed.

My fiancé and I traveling so much have had quite the experience of Southern dinners done right. We went with my fiancé’s family to a lovely restaurant in New Orleans called Galatoire’s once. It was incredible!

Hopefully, I’m making on of his favorites— banana cream pie.

We’ve had a lovely lazy Sunday here at the farm.

Just kinda middlin’ through the day, now.

Mass was wonderful! It’s good to be back in my home parish again. The mass was introduced by a beautiful song in Spanish. The singer had such a beautiful voice!

Afterwards, we went with friends out to lunch at Dairy Queen. It was so good to see old time friends and local community people again.

My pottery also came back from the shop and it looks great! Oh, my goodness, I never thought something I would paint and have fired in a kiln would look this good. 🤗

Check it out!

Cow teacup; COFFEE for me please

Obviously, coffee stains from this morning. Smilingcoffeecup comes with coffee. 😋

After much deliberation my fiancé and I decided on wedding guest gifts! Homemade jam! I’ll begin making jam for my wedding guest gifts. During this summer I need to can at least 175 jars of jam. Ayiyi!

So, excited to continue on this week with my studies and see what happens on the farm. My class, is admittedly, less stressful than the last time I took it.

I am progressing through my class well and I think I’m well enough ahead of schedule to not be stressed. Hurrrah!

Kansas is so beautiful with the golden fields of wheat right now. Oh my goodness!

We’ll friends, I’m off to make dinner, tootles for now!

😊☕️

Friends of KS Reunion

The rain shimmers down the gutter as I leisurely lift my cup to my lips slowly sipping my coffee as I wonder what this summer will bring.

What a wonderful time of year on the Kansas prairie.

I was elated to meet with one of my closest friends this morning for coffee and see all three of her children. What a joy! I was able to hold her second youngest who, in fact, I was the first to hold at the hospital after mom and dad, of course. So it made that doubly joyful!

This friend, in fact, moved several states over to KS after working one summer and falling in love with the farm. Meanwhile, getting married and having several children! Wow, I held her teeny-tiny baby too. She is such a wonderful friend!

We had a good long conversation about ourselves and how our personal lives were as well as dappling in politics and world events. We talked especially about how life was changing so break-neckingly fast under the Biden administration.

On a lighter side we also talked about working out and staying fit which is a goal for the both of us. I have been, recently getting back into the swing of ab workouts, which makes my body feel better and stronger. My friend having just had a baby still is limited to only walking for a couple weeks more. Since, I left my bike in PA I guess I’m somewhat limited to walking as well. :/

And to my surprise and joy, she told me that my bridesmaids had planned a bachelorette party for me! Wow, I am so excited!

I am ahead of schedule for my Child Psychology class and working on submitting and ardently studying all my materials. And looking forward to a trip to the city soon. What a lark! I’ll be helping transport asparagus to one of my dad’s buyers.

Meanwhile, while we’re in the city we’ll be picking up a bagpipe reed that my fiancé needs for a talent show in my little town!

I also just properly identified that this part of the bagpipe is called a GOOSE! The bag is leather and the rest is wood.

The town will be so surprised I think!

Blessing #4: Cinnamon-Rolls-so-good-you’ll-lose-count

I sit looking out my window at the grey sky, misty-moisty hills covered in fog, and the bright, almost neon leaves outside. I’m so blessed to have this place. Wow, I’m in awe of being alone in PA as my first solo move.

Yesterday, the weather was much the same. I felt dreary like the whole state needed a little sunshine. So I found one of my favorite hobbies—baking!! I baked some INCREDIBLE INCREDIBLE cinnamon rolls. That coincidentally we had for our friend who came for brunch!

Cinnamon rolls so good you’ll lose count of how many you’ve had.

DELICIOUS CINNAMON ROLLS!

#3 Blessing: Birds of a Feather

Good day friends! I woke this morning to a beautiful sunrise. The damp grass glistened across the lawn and the happy chirp of the Eastern Towhee bird. The Towhee bird is one that my fiancé and I discovered on our walk through the woods. “Through the woods”, that sounds so romantic, heehee.


Eastern Towhee bird

It’s quite a beautiful bird!

Also, on our walk I identified several native trees. I have this nifty little app called Picture this!

Picture this! Plant identifier app

Also, I baked these fun yummy cool whip cookies! I cut the recipe in half because I only had 1/2 cup cool whip. These cookies were the simplest to make and like I said yummy. I’d say 7/10.

Cool Whip Cookies

  • 1/2 c. Cool whip
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup devils food cake cake mix

Set oven to 350 degrees F. Beat the cool whip and egg. If your cool whip is too hard, microwave 15 seconds. Sounds crazy but trust me. Mix in the cake mix. Bake for approximately 8-10 minutes. The cookies will be still soft right out of the oven but trust the cooling process to solidify them. Oh my goodness they tasted just like brownies. So good!

My fiancé certainly like them, haha! He ate mine while I wasn’t like looking.

Yesterday, we went to a food truck festival. We stopped at El Gusto Criollo, which was DELICIOUS! I had my first Venezuelan empanada. I had chicken and plantains in mine which I must say was delicious! I love ethnic foods.

It was a wonderful day!

Perservere with Happiness through Difficulty

A smile brightens my face as the first rays of sunshine appear above the horizon. What a beautiful dawn it is. I have a decent bit of things on my plate to do this morning but being there to witness the dawn of a new day gives me so much peace. It’s the little things that make life beautiful, I think.

Anyhow, I finished reading two chapters of my psychology book in the dark… Well, in the dark on a lighted porch. I couldn’t sleep and thought I might as well get some homework outta the way. I enjoy doing my homework before the world wakes up.

Today, is Holy Monday which starts the beginning of Holy Week and the lead-up to Easter. I will be writing cards all this next week to friends and family announcing our wedding as well as a little personal note. I think Holy Week is symbolically a wonderful time to get that done.

I confess, this year has been tough on me. I have waffled between keto, gluten-free, vegetarian etc. diets. Which indeed, took a toll on me. I, recently, was diagnosed with anemia.

With any new diagnosis it seems, there’s shock, then disbelief, then anger at the diagnosis. For me at least.

I’m going to start eating a balanced diet and see if that helps as well as B12 supplements.

So, I did a little nutritional research on foods that will help my dificiency:

  • White Bread
  • Eggs
  • Tuna
  • Salmon
  • Fortified Cereal
  • Red meat
  • Kale & Spinach
  • Fortified Orange Juice

It’s not a huge change, just a little, and I’m sure I’ll be fine by-and-by.

Maybe you’ve experienced this diagnosis too. Please share below in how you’re dealing with it.

Persevere even when times get rough… My motto and I’m stickin’ by it.

-Smilingcoffeecup