Rich Coffee Cake

Rich Coffee Cake

I got this coffee cake recipe from my Mom, who provides me with pretty much all of my recipes.  She has made this a few times and most recently at Thanksgiving.  I really like it, so I thought I would make it for work tomorrow. It wasn’t too difficult to make, but does involve layering. This was the first time I used my bundt pan, and I probably should have left it in there a little longer before flipping it because some of it did not come entirely out of the pan. It should still taste good though.  ...
Outlander: My New Fascination

Outlander: My New Fascination

I am ridiculously enthralled by Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series. I spent the majority of last year reading all eight books in the series so far and have been lucky enough to get to see the first eight episodes of the series on Starz. The story is about a nurse, Claire Randall , after the end of World War II, who travels through stones and ends up in Scotland the 1740’s, where she meets James Fraser.  Needless to say the story evolves and grows … I don’t want to spoil it for those who haven’t read these books yet. The books are long and verbose, each probably averages 850 pages or so, but are so worth it. I’m anxious to read through them again, but for now I will step back and look forward to the next part of Season 1 on...

Like/Love

Today’s homily was interesting in that the priest defined Love in a way I’ve never thought of it. Today’s Gospel reading was Matthew 22: 34-40, which includes these words: Jesus said to him, “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your should, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” – Matthew 22: 37-39 The priest started off by asking if we’ve ever said that we “love” chocolate, our car, our pets … and then said that what we really should say in those instances is that we “like” these things.  Because like is will and love is a commandment.  Like is fleeting, it will come and go as our opinions or situations change, whereas love doesn’t. He used St. Thomas Aquinas’ definition of love, which is “to will the good of another”. When we love someone, we want what is best for that person and we act on it to make what is best for them a...

My Strengths

For almost the past two years at work we have been doing a devotional Monday mornings to start our week off right. The past few months we have been going through the book The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale. This week we started a new one called StrengthsFinder 2.0 by Tom Rath, which was really interesting. There really isn’t a whole lot to the book itself, but where it gets you is with the online assessment that you take to find out what your top five strengths are. After taking the assessment and reading through the description in the book and the insights in the PDF, I thought that four out of the five were dead on. I’m not so sure about the fifth … 1. Empathy Empathy was listed as my top strength. I thought it was interesting to get this one after the really nice message one of my co-workers sent me on my birthday where she mentioned my being empathetic. Points that stand out from the insight: Want others to see the good qualities in one another and in situations Natural aptitude for overcoming difficulties Called upon to locate trouble, make needed repairs or implement solutions Ignore distractions Sense when a person can benefit from support, kind words or deeds Sympathetic to the idea that money cannot buy you contentment, peace or well-being Awareness and insights into the moods of individuals Rarely distance self from those who you sense need to be there for them What stands out the most to me in that list is the “awareness and insights into the moods...
House of Heroes Never Fails

House of Heroes Never Fails

I say that a lot, but House of Heroes really never fails. They played at Cross Church in Springdale with Rapture Ruckus and Cory Lamb last night, and I ventured up there with a friend of mine. The first exciting thing was that I passed them in their van heading up I-540. They were stuck behind a semi, and I’m sure didn’t want to pass it with their trailer. I wonder if they were just rolling in or if they had gone down to Fayetteville for dinner. My friend and I stayed near the back for Cory Lamb’s set, and then when all of the teenagers cleared the room during the set change, we moved on up to the front. I watched HOH with much interest while they set up and did a quick sound check. I gave a slight wave and mouthed “hi” to Tim Skipper, the lead singer, while he was messing with the microphone and he said “hi” back. Their set lasted about 25 minutes and they crammed it with six songs, including: Remember the Empire,  God Save the Foolish Kings, Serial Sleepers, Code Name: Raven, Dance and Touch This Light.  I was enthralled as I usually am when they are playing live.  I’m not sure what it is about their stage show and their music, but it’s just awesome. It wasn’t hard to notice that I was the only person in the crowd who was singing along to each of their songs.  Tim kept glancing over at me, and looked pleased that there was at least one person who was into their stuff.  I felt...
My Ears are Still Ringing

My Ears are Still Ringing

Last night I ventured down to Little Rock, where I got to see two of my favorite bands, Relient K and House of Heroes, for the first time in at least two and a half years. It’s been a dry-spell for me when it comes to concerts the past couple of years and last night was just what I needed to get back into it. The show started about 9:45 p.m., which is rather late for me, and I wasn’t even in the door yet, which was unfortunate because House of Heroes was the first up, so I missed their first couple of songs. As soon as I got inside, I parked myself right at the front-left next to two speakers and had my ears blasted out for the first two and a half bands. House of Heroes never fails to disappoint during their sets.  The songs I caught included: “God Save the Foolish Kings”, “Serial Sleepers”, “Dance”, “Code Name: Raven”, and “Touch This Light”, which I continued to have in my head throughout the rest of the night.  Naturally their set was not long enough, but even when I’ve seen them headline an hour and a half is not enough. The second act was William Beckett, who I had never heard of.  During his set, Tim Skipper (HOH’s lead singer), Ethan Luck (RK’s drummer) and Matt Thiessen (RK lead singer) came out and did a song with him.  It was rather entertaining when Tim stumbled through the lyrics and looked frustrated for doing so.  I did enjoy his stuff and will probably venture to iTunes and see what...