Friday, May 18, 2012

He is I Am

As is sometimes the case with CajunGuy's job, he will get called to go back to work after he has gotten home for the day. {The joys of being on-call!}

I usually stay home but tonight when he was called I went with him. I'm glad I did!

As we drove toward his shop I spotted a car with a personalized plate. Most often I don't give them a second look because they're just ridiculous. {I know you've seen at least one plate that said "HOTSTUFF". Haha!}

This one was cool though. It said "HEISIAM". {He is I Am} "I Am" is my favorite of God's many names.

He isn't I Was. He wasn't something in the past that He no longer is.

He isn't I Will Be. He doesn't lack something now that He will later possess.

He is I Am. He has always been, is now and forever will be perfect, holy and just.

His name is so powerful. When He told Moses to go tell Pharoah to let His people go, Moses asked Him who he should say sent him.

God responds simply, "Tell him I Am sent you." Gives me chills every time I read that story. {How in awe Moses must've been to stand in God's presence!}

This is what I Am has taught me:

I Am with you in your darkest moments.
I'm the Light of the World and I do my best work in the dark.

I Am never going to leave you.
I bought you at a high price. Why would I do that just to forsake you?

I Am watching over you. Not a single hair on your head is unaccounted for.

I Am the One who created the Universe. I hold it in my hands and nothing happens that is out of my control.

I Am the Alpha and the Omega. The beginning and the end. I've seen it all. Nothing that happens is a surprise to Me.

I Am able to do things beyond your wildest expectations. Trust Me.

I Am.

Isn't it the greatest of all His names?!?

John 8:58
Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am."

Friday, May 11, 2012

Looks Can Be Deceiving

For those of you unfamiliar with Cajun Country, things here don't exactly work like they do in other places. Street names are in French, directions are given by landmarks and words are not pronounced like they look.

In fact, I get into more debates about pronunciation than I do about anything else. Why it matters so much to me is beyond me, but I debate anyway because:
  1.  It's in my nature (Mom says I would have made a great attorney) and 
  2.  What else do I really have to do on a day-to-day basis? Aside from a daily load of laundry and a never-ending sink full of dishes.
 I am constantly fascinated (and a wee bit perplexed) by the way some words around here are pronounced.

 See if you can pronounce these words. I've given you a hint about their origin to help you.
  • Delcambre (a city) This was by far the biggest mind-bender for me. Pronunciation: Dell-come. Seriously.
  • Schlumberger (a company) Not exactly an offense to the English language but not exactly how I have heard it pronounced all my life either. Pronunciation: Sh-lumber-jay. Maybe I'm wrong (that even hurts to type, HA!) but I have always heard it pronounced Sh-lum-burger.
  • Retif (a company) Again, not offensive, but odd. Pronunciation: Reh-tiff.
  • Domingue (a company) I have actually had a spirited debate with CajunGuy about this one. And by spirited debate I mean an epic argument over what is "correct". We're still working out the kinks of our new marriage. What can I say? Pronunciation: Dough-main-guh. (Please tell me I'm not the only one who pronounces it Dough-mean-gay.)
  • Iowa (a city) Yes, it's also a state. But it is not pronounced the way you think. Pronunciation: Eye-oh-way.

Frugal Friday: Banana Chimichangas

Perfect way to end an evening!

I have an insatiable sweet tooth lately.
Some days it's a craving for something fried (yes, I knooooow), some days it's a craving for a piece of fruit and some days (like yesterday) it's a craving for both.

The cheapo in me started thinking of all the ways I could combine the two without spending a fortune. I thought of going to Sonic for some French Toast, but that was more trouble than it's worth. (In money and calories!)

So I stood in my kitchen with nothing more than a craving and a budget.
I dug around until I found flour tortillas and a banana. Oh, the glory!

The Banana Chimichanga was born!
And, because I like the kitchen but don't care to spend all day in there, this recipe is super simple! 

You will need:
  • 1 banana (I prefer the spotty ones!)  $0.13
  • 1 flour (or corn) tortilla  $0.20
  • 1 Tbsp. peanut butter (optional)  $0.08
  • 1/2 C. Canola/Vegetable Oil for frying  $0.31
  • 1 Tbsp. Honey for garnishing (optional, but highly recommended!) $0.11
  • Brown Sugar/Cinnamon mixture for garnishing (optional, but again, highly recommended!) $0.03
  • An awesome post-snack workout to reduce the number of pounds this snack can pack on.

  1. Using shallow pan, heat approximately 1/2 cup of oil to 325 degrees. (You may need more or less depending on your pan size.) 
  2. While oil is heating, spread peanut butter on tortilla in a thin layer. (If not using peanut butter, skip this step.) 
  3. Place a whole banana on tortilla and roll up until sealed. 
  4. Place rolled tortilla in hot oil, seam side down, and fry approximately 1 minute on each side or until golden brown.
  5. Drain your chimis on a paper towel and garnish with honey and brown sugar/cinnamon mixture.
Total cost: $0.86 (!!!)

While it's not the healthiest thing in the world, I console myself with the fact that it does contain 1/3 of my recommended daily fruit intake. 

And the fact that it costs me less than a buck to make? That just makes it even easier to eat one.  

Or two. ;-)

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Confessions of a Couponaholic

I have a confession: I love coupons. I use them all. the. time. I have no shame when it comes to making our one income stretch as far as possible. In fact, it gives me a thrill. 
The folks behind me in lines don't really like it though. 

Well, except for one very curious lady.

Picture it: Target, about a month ago. I was just finishing my weekly pilgrimage and found an empty checkout lane (lest I hold up a long line). I had a stack of coupons in my hand and I was ready to do some damage to my total bill. Everything was going well and all of my coupons were scanning (!) and the cashier was coupon-friendly (!!). 

Then the dreaded "beep" happened. For those of you who don't coupon, the "beep" is something couponers dread. It means that the register is beeping to alert the cashier that the coupon doesn't meet some (usually ridiculous) criteria. It means a manager has to be called. It also means that a line of angry people behind you will start to form.  
C'est la vie, right?

And, of course, there was a line beginning to form behind me at this point. Of the 3 or 4 unhappy people behind me, I noticed one lady was curious. Very curious. I caught her watching me very closely a few times. I knew by the look on her face that she was intrigued by what I was doing (not that I'm special, but I did have about 30 coupons in my hand.) It was taking the manager a while to come to the register so I turned around to the line and apologized for holding things up.
I suppose it was this apology that broke the ice for the curious lady because she said something that made me chuckle. I even blushed a little.

"Are you one of those extreme couponers?," she asked. 
"I don't think so," I told her.  "I do what I can to make one income stretch as far as I can. But my family thinks I'm extreme, so maybe I am?" 

We had a good chuckle and she asked me where I get my coupons and how long I've been doing it. Of the people in that line, she was by far the most kind. The rest of the line probably wanted to chase me to the parking lot with pitchforks and torches.

Am I in denial about my use of coupons? CajunGuy would point to the amount of printer ink we go through in a month (which, by the way, I got for free). My parents would point to the fact that even when we go out to eat as a family I usually have a coupon.

OK, so maybe I have a problem. But it's not like they have a Couponers Anonymous group.

Besides, I know "my kind". The meetings would go something like this:
"My name is Liz. And I have a problem. By the way, I have a coupon to cover this meeting fee. Y'all take 'em?"

Ah, yes. Old habits die hard.