Wednesday, January 2, 2019

On The First Day of January

Image may contain: plant, outdoor and nature

“You tear apart the babies rattle, and you see what makes the noise inside. But there is a veil covering the unseen world, which not the strongest man could tear apart. Only faith, poetry, love and romance, can push aside that curtain and view the beauty and the glory beyond."

-  from Yes, Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus

Bill and I went for a walk yesterday, on a trail system I had tried to find once before, but because of poor markings, was unable to locate. Thankfully in the time since I was last there, they installed some signs and a map at the trail head, so I am glad for that. These trails are more woodsy than Blackwater and a little closer to the apartment, so I think I'll consider them as I move back into making walking and hiking a priority again.

A New Year's Day walk is a tradition I began last year. For me it is a time to simply be in nature and to pray over and reflect upon the coming year. And so I was glad when I suggested the idea, that Bill was eager to join me. We had a good discussion about the upcoming year and our goals, making suggestions for how we can love one another better, and insuring that we are on the same page with our plans for the future. It's beautiful to see the changes in our relationship, and the way the Lord has bound our hearts together. There is an ease between us now that didn't exist before, a comforting assurance.

At one point along the trail, I realized that in our conversation, I had failed to appreciate the barren beauty of the winter woods, and when I looked up, a forest of trees still covered in the golden leaves, pictured above, surrounded us. I had never seen anything like it, and I recognized it immediately as God displaying His glory, His goodness, passing before me. (Exodus 33:19). It was a beautiful moment that I will never forget, and heightened my anticipation of future revelations of His faithfulness to me.

We stopped off at Sheetz on the way home and got our free New Year's Day coffee. I rarely get coffee out, but when it's free, well, count me in! They also have dispensers for their creamer now, which did a much better job of sweetening my cup. Much better than the pods they used to carry.  We then stopped at the market to pick up a few things, and Bill helped me to see why buying my lemons individually, at .69 each, which seemed like robbery to me, was a better purchase than a bag of them for $2.99. It didn't make sense to me at first, but when he pointed out that individual lemons are larger, and most likely better quality, I was curious. Then when I did the math and realized the cost was also better, I was sold. I only use half a lemon each day in my lemon water, so 4 lemons at .69 each is about $2.80. That's enough lemons for 8 days, and the nifty little juicer he purchased while he was living in Delaware, does a great job of juicing them for me.

I've been drinking lemon water for about eight months now, and when I am consistent, I notice a marked improvement in my immunity. I won't go in to a long explanation of the health benefits, but if you're interested, this article should answer some of the questions you might have. And should you decide that you want to make this a part of your daily health regimen, I'm including the measurements I use at the end of this post. Please note, I do not support this as a weight loss strategy, but for the health benefits that drinking one cup first thing in the morning on a daily basis has personally proven.

One of the reasons I wanted to get out and into nature yesterday is because I've been nursing a cold since Christmas Eve. I've been pushing through in that time, doing last minute shopping, picking up the ingredients for our holiday meals, and Bill and I attended a Christmas Eve service, as well. But that's obviously not the same as being in nature, and I thought, perhaps, that getting my boots dirty might do me good.

I was fine on the walk, and even after we came home, but when Kate texted and asked if I could meet her for lunch, which I was happy to do, my symptoms worsened to the point that by the time I got back home my throat hurt so bad and my voice had grown so hoarse, I could hardly speak. I still think it's just a cold, as I am not running a fever, but at any rate, it's a bad one.  

With that, I had hoped to pack away our Christmas decorations and begin some re-organizing of the spaces in our apartment today. But instead it appears as though copious cups of lemon tea are in order, to which I will also adding a bit of ginger. I'm going to situate myself on the couch with a stack of books and magazines, a few old movies, and the company and comfort of my dog, as both Bill and Kate are working. And on this note, my friends, I will close. I've noticed on facebook that this nasty stuff seems pretty wide-spread as I have friends and family from coast to coast nursing similar symptoms. So may I suggest that should you discover that you have succumbed to its demise, consider adding this tea, to your armory? 


8 oz. cup of hot water
Juice from 1/2 of an organic lemon
1 tbsp. honey
Healthy dash of cayenne pepper

Add all ingredients to the cup and stir repeatedly while drinking to keep the cayenne distributed.
This will keep the cayenne from settling to the bottom and insure that you consume it.  
Otherwise, those last few sips, will be a zinger!

Until then,

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