Sunday 13 March 2011

Marie's Sunday Six

Welcome to my Sunday Six post for March 13, 2011! This is one of my favourite posts that I do each week. I usually go to bed on Saturday night thinking about what I am going to write about in the morning and then I wake up thinking about it as well. It is really nice to be able to dwell on all that is good in life and some of the highlights of my week gone past!

I think the major highlight of my week had to be seeing my finished rubber stamps. You can check them all out here. I am so excited about them finally being done and you being able to see them. I worked so hard on them all and I am so pleased with the way the company has grouped them together. I do really love them. I am so blessed that I have been able to find this creative outlet for my talents. Pinch me coz I surely must be dreaming! I think this one is my favourite one, but that's because I love toadstools! Smile maker number one!

For the last 8 years Todd and I have been making do with kitchen chairs that we got at our local tip. (British term for dump) We were there one day dropping off some refuse and a lady drove in behind us dumping a table and 4 chairs. They were in better condition than the ones we had so she very kindly gave them to us. We've gotten 8 years of use out of the, but they were getting past their prime and falling apart. If Todd was the handy sort I am sure we could have kept them going longer, but alas . . . he is not. We have been looking for some more chairs for the last little while. We do not need a table as we have a fine oak table, although beat up and worn, is very sturdy. It's really hard to find chairs without a table, but yesterday we were in a second hand shop in Queens Ferry and lo and behold there they were. Four oak, rush seated chairs, with no table! The guy wanted £125 for them, but we beat him down to £90 . . . and he even delivered them to our door! Smile number two.

Our friend Doreen is always buying American Indian Figurines from this man's shop and I happened to ask him did he ever get in any fairies, coz as you know, I just love fairies. Well, when he and his partner brought the chairs to our house yesterday, he also had a bag with 3 fairies in it and he only wanted £8 for all three of them! I could not resist and I just happened to have the change in my purse. So now I have three more fairies in the house. Smile maker number three!

We had a movie night here last night, just the three of us . . . Todd, Mitzie and myself. Now, most husbands would want to watch an action film, something macho and masculine. Not my Todd. I am so lucky! Not many husbands would settle in with a bowl of popcorn and Haley Mills would they? That makes me smile. We watched The Parent Trap! There was no moaning and groaning on his part, or complaining when I picked it out to watch. He was quite happy to do so! Am I a lucky woman or what!! Smile maker number four!

Our beautiful chapel in Ewloe, Wales makes me smile. It is the Chester Ward, but our chapel is in Wales. For years we did not have a chapel here. When I first moved over to England we were meeting in an old school that had been converted into a Community Centre. It was cold in the winter and very noisy all the time. Often on Sunday mornings it smelled bad because there had been a dog show in it the day before, or a bingo night with beer and ciggarettes, or some other equally as smelly activity. It was not very conducive to the spirit, but we did our best. It is so nice to have a Chapel here now. A beautiful new chapel that we can worship in each week. We do not have to set up the chairs each week, or take them down when we are done. It does not smell like manure or beer. It is clean and quiet. It is a building dedicated to the Lord's work. It is a special blessing. Having a place to call our own to worship in . . . that really makes me smile. Smile maker number five!

These two wonderful creatures make me smile every day of my beautiful life. I am so very blessed to have a husband who dotes on me and who loves me. I am so very blessed to have this beautiful puppy that likewise dotes on me and who loves me. We are a family and we all love each other. When I think back to exactly a year ago at this time, and all the upset that was going on in our lives . . . the loss of job and home, the loss of Jess . . . I can see that although it seemed like the worst of times, it was also the best of times. We have come so far in that year. We have a lovely cosy home, a home that we don't have to worry about losing, at least in our life times. We have a beautiful little puppy that we adore. We have our health. We have each other and the deep love that we share for each other. We have our faith and the peace and comfort of mind that it brings to us. It has been a rough ride from time to time and it was not all that easy to see at the beginning of this dark tunnel that there would be any light at the end of it . . . but there is and we are so blessed to have found it. I knew there would be. There always is . . . you just have to keep putting one foot in front of the other and moving forward. I am so happy that I have a heart that is willing to move forward in faith and that can trust in the Lord. Life is good. Smile maker number six.

Of course there have been a lot of other smiles this week, like having a knee that is feeling a lot better, and being able to finally scrub the horrible arrow that the Doctor had drawn on my leg pointing up to my knee away! (I was so worried it would be there still and I would have to explain over and over again to the children at church what it was for.) Sunny weather, singing birds, trees budding, milder days . . . and all of you! You all make me smile as well. I love the time I spend on here with you. It is just like catching up with a good friend. I do hope that you have a wonderful Sabbath day and that you have a beautiful week ahead, chock full of smiles and blessings!

Here's a delicious meal that I made often for my family when they were growing up. They always loved it. It was hearty and tasty and made just enough for us. Of course, I love anything that is called pie, so I quite enjoyed it as well. All you need on the side is a tossed salad!

*Meat and Potato Pie*
Serves 6
Printable Recipe

This is something my children loved when they were growing up. Hearty and tasty!

2 TBS shortening
1 1/2 cups of biscuit/baking mix
3 to 4 TBS water

For the filling:
1 1/2 pound extra lean ground beef
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
1 can (10 3/4 ounces) condensed cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp dried rosemary, rubbed between your fingers
1/2 tsp dried thyme, rubbed between your fingers
1 large carrot, peeled, sliced into coins, then cooked until crispy tender
1 tin of mushroom stems and pieces, drained well
2 cups hot mashed potatoes, prepared with milk and butter
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup grated strong cheddar cheese

Preheat the oven to 220*C/425*F/ gas mark 6.

Place the biscuit mix into a bowl. Cut in the shortening using a pastry cutter or two round bladed knives, until it resembles coarse crumbs. Add the water, one tablespoon at a time and toss together with a fork, until the dough forms a ball. Roll out on a lightly floured surface to fit a 9 inch pie dish. Line the dish with the pastry, trimming and fluting the edges. Set aside.

Lightly spray a large skillet with nonstock cookin spray. Add the ground beef and onion. Cook over medium heat until the meat is no longer pink. Stir in the soup and seasonings. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the carrots and mushrooms. Taste and adjust seasoning as required. Pour into the prepared pie shell.

Beat the mashed potatoes together with the sour cream. Spread over top of the meat mixture. Bake for 15 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes longer or until golden brown. Sprinkle with the cheese and return to the oven for a few more minutes to melt the cheese. Let stand for 5 to10 minutes before serving.

Over in The English Kitchen today there is a delicious Irish Boiled Fruit Cake.


  1. How truly blessed you are Marie...As I am...Thank you for always reminding us of just how blessed we are...I am going out for lunch today taking Sarah and Peter, will be a nice change. arah and I large for Peter LOL. Mary will miss out as she does not get back from her church till later..
    Have a lovely day. Had a wee bit rain earlier but hope it may brighten up as day gets going.
    Love Sybil x

  2. was trying to say that Sarah and I will have small helpings and Peter Large...don;t know where these words went LOL.
    Meant also to say I am loving sharing your dolls house stories with Mary she is fascinated..
    lOve SYbil x

  3. What a truly delightful post Marie.
    I love how you celebrate the simple joys in life.

    We are having a Sunday morning of fun with Jess and Em, some cooking will be involved I am sure.

    Enjoy your day

    Big Hugs


  4. Thank you for your inspiration post. Serenity is something that is so important to me. Enjoy your Sunday.

  5. Your new stamps are very nice. I know that a lot of hard work went into creating them and you did a wonderful job. Congratulations ! I do hope they are a huge success! You have much in your life to SMILE about for sure! I hope your Sunday is a wonderful one!

  6. I do love your spindleback chairs, Marie. I grew up with a set of these, but they were sold when my parents died.
    You've got yourself a real bargain there.

  7. What a happy post. I looked at all of the stamps and love them. You are so talented. I am proud of you and happy for you.
    Congrats on getting new chairs and 3 new fairies... and all for a bargain. That would make anyone smile.
    I can't believe your Toddster happily watched The Parent Trap with you. What a sweet hubby you have....but then you already know that. No wonder that he and Mitzie make you smile.
    Your ward building is beautiful. I am glad that you don't have to meet in a community center. Is Wales far from your home?
    Yes, you have lots to smile about. So do I. Aren't we lucky blessed. Have a great week dear.
    Many hugs, Lura

    ps... John and I enjoyed your salisbury steak with mushrooms recipe you gave us last week.... I am sure we will also enjoy this meat pie. Yummy

  8. Just checked out your rubber stamps. They are really, really nice. You are so talented.


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