X-Plan: Giving your kids a way out (#xplan)

THANK YOU  BERT FULKS 

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X-Plan: Giving your kids a way out (#xplan)

Friends, as most of you know, I get to spend an hour each week with a group of young people going through addiction recovery.  Yes.  Young people.  I’m talking teenagers who are locked away for at least six months as they learn to overcome their addictions.  I’m always humbled and honored to get this time with these beautiful young souls that have been so incredibly assaulted by a world they have yet to understand.  This also comes with the bittersweet knowledge that these kids still have a fighting chance while several of my friends have already had to bury their own children.

Recently I asked these kids a simple question:  “How many of you have found yourself in situations where things started happening that you weren’t comfortable with, but you stuck around, mainly because you felt like you didn’t have a way out?”

They all raised their hands.

Every single one of them.

In the spirit of transparency … I get it.  Though in my mid-forties, I’m still in touch with that awkward boy who often felt trapped in the unpredictable currents of teenage experiences.  I can’t count the times sex, drugs, and alcohol came rushing into my young world; I wasn’t ready for any of it, but I didn’t know how to escape and, at the same time, not castrate myself socially.  I still recall my first time drinking beer at a friend’s house in junior high school—I hated it, but I felt cornered.  As an adult, that now seems silly, but it was my reality at the time.  “Peer pressure” was a frivolous term for an often silent, but very real thing; and I certainly couldn’t call my parents and ask them to rescue me.  I wasn’t supposed to be there in the first place.  As a teen, forcing down alcohol seemed a whole lot easier than offering myself up for punishment, endless nagging and interrogation, and the potential end of freedom as I knew it.

X-Plan

xplan-text1-2For these reasons, we now have something called the “X-plan” in our family.  This simple, but powerful tool is a lifeline that our kids are free to use at any time.  Here’s how it works:

Let’s say that my youngest, Danny, gets dropped off at a party.  If anything about the situation makes him uncomfortable, all he has to do is text the letter “X” to any of us (his mother, me, his older brother or sister).  The one who receives the text has a very basic script to follow.  Within a few minutes, they call Danny’s phone.  When he answers, the conversation goes like this:

“Hello?”

“Danny, something’s come up and I have to come get you right now.”

“What happened?”

“I’ll tell you when I get there.  Be ready to leave in five minutes.  I’m on my way.”

At that point, Danny tells his friends that something’s happened at home, someone is coming to get him, and he has to leave.

In short, Danny knows he has a way out; at the same time, there’s no pressure on him to open himself to any social ridicule.  He has the freedom to protect himself while continuing to grow and learn to navigate his world.

This is one of the most loving things we’ve ever given him, and it offers him a sense of security and confidence in a world that tends to beat our young people into submission.

xplan-text1However, there’s one critical component to the X-plan:  Once he’s been extracted from the trenches, Danny knows that he can tell us as much or as little as he wants … but it’s completely up to him.  The X-plan comes with the agreement that we will pass no judgments and ask no questions (even if he is 10 miles away from where he’s supposed to be).  This can be a hard thing for some parents (admit it, some of us are complete control-freaks); but I promise it might not only save them, but it will go a long way in building trust between you and your kid.

(One caveat here is that Danny knows if someone is in danger, he has a moral obligation to speak up for their protection, no matter what it may cost him personally.  That’s part of the lesson we try to teach our kids—we are our brother’s keeper, and sometimes we have to stand for those too weak to stand for themselves.  Beyond that, he doesn’t have to say a word to us.  Ever.)

For many of us parents, we lament the intrusion of technology into our relationships.  I hate seeing people sit down to dinner together and then proceed to stare into their phones.  It drives me nuts when my kids text me from another room in our house.  However, cell phones aren’t going away, so we need to find ways to use this technology to help our kids in any way we can.

I urge you to use some form of our X-plan in your home.  If you honor it, your kids will thank you for it.  You never know when something so simple could be the difference between your kid laughing with you at the dinner table or spending six months in a recovery center … or (God forbid) something far worse.

Prayers for strength and compassion to the parents out there as we all try to figure this whole parenting gig out—it never gets easy.

I beg you to share this piece.  If this somehow gives just one kid a way out of a bad situation, we can all feel privileged to have been a part of that.

#xplan

Blessings, friends.

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The Starfish Story: one step towards changing the world

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The Starfish Story: one step towards changing the world

You may have heard this one, but I find that it doesn’t hurt to be reminded of it every once in a while.  First let me tell you the story, and then we can talk about it.

Once upon a time, there was an old man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach every morning before he began his work. Early one morning, he was walking along the shore after a big storm had passed and found the vast beach littered with starfish as far as the eye could see, stretching in both directions.

Off in the distance, the old man noticed a small boy approaching.  As the boy walked, he paused every so often and as he grew closer, the man could see that he was occasionally bending down to pick up an object and throw it into the sea.  The boy came closer still and the man called out, “Good morning!  May I ask what it is that you are doing?”

The young boy paused, looked up, and replied “Throwing starfish into the ocean. The tide has washed them up onto the beach and they can’t return to the sea by themselves,” the youth replied. “When the sun gets high, they will die, unless I throw them back into the water.”

The old man replied, “But there must be tens of thousands of starfish on this beach. I’m afraid you won’t really be able to make much of a difference.”

The boy bent down, picked up yet another starfish and threw it as far as he could into the ocean. Then he turned, smiled and said, “It made a difference to that one!”

adapted from The Star Thrower, by Loren Eiseley (1907 – 1977)
We all have the opportunity to help create positive change, but if you’re like me, you sometimes find yourself thinking, “I’m already really busy, and how much of a difference can I really make?”  I think this is especially true when we’re talking about addressing massive social problems like tackling world hunger or finding a cure for cancer, but it pops up all of the time in our everyday lives, as well. So when I catch myself thinking that way, it helps to remember this story.  You might not be able to change the entire world, but at least you can change a small part of it, for someone.

They say that one of the most common reasons we procrastinate is because we see the challenge before us as overwhelming, and that a good way to counter that is to break the big challenge down into smaller pieces and then take those one at a time–like one starfish at a time.  And to that one starfish, it can make a world of difference.

“A single, ordinary person still can make a difference – and single, ordinary people are doing precisely that every day.”

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And that is what I do…

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Welcome to Adult Bullying

LET THEM WALK!

God’s will be done / inshallah
Solution – at the bottom of this post ♡ its right there, if and/or when you want it 😀
Read, smile and go on & do good works ♡


~ 2 posts I happened upon below ♡ although my opinion is still SIMPLY Let Them Walk ♡

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Look up!

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Welcome to adult bullying, where mean girls are now grown women.

Who would’ve thunk it? But…it’s true. And maybe different solutions work for different people and situations; however…my mode of operation is to walk away….no RUN. .  away from toxicity. A kinder way of saying an angry bitter old b***h.  I don’t need to know any “whys” or “hows”, life’s too short and precious. in other words ~ too blessed to be stressed by the devil’s mess.”

“If” It’s helpful, here’s are the 2 posts on the subject; a different point of view … 😀

I still say… #MoveOn  

LOL-samu-chan.gif    💕♫ ♪☮ #laugh #love #hope #faith remember…laughter IS the best medicine. #

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What To Do When Your Bestie Becomes A Bitch

Water Off A Duck’s Back: How to deal with a P.I.T.A.

Waterproof-DucklingDid you know that ducks have a special preen gland near their tail, that when they rub that oil on their feathers with their beaks, it makes them waterproof? That oil gives their feathers protection from water damage and extreme weather conditions as well.

Ever been around someone who just won’t shut up? I mean, that yapper that just vomits his/her opinion all over you even if you’re not asking for it? They don’t care if you don’t feel the same way that they do and can care very little about your moral beliefs, background, or political views. They’re downright passionate about their own point-of-view, speaking until their veins are bulging out of their foreheads and necks, it’s like the only opinion that makes the most sense is theirs. They’re not generally nasty individuals, they’re just close minded. To clarify, they aren’t shouting at you or even arguing with you, rather they’re providing you a a rehearsed lecture on their belief system, whether you’ve asked for it or not. They are the complete opposite of a passive aggressive person. In fact, this is the only moment in your life, even if you are a “straight-shooter” like me, that you wished to GAWD for a passive aggressive or a “stonewaller.” These people have a specific channel or channels they watch on television. They have very specific political views, and you’ll know by the end of the conversation if they believe in God or not.

Here’s the trick with dealing with emotional, passionate people who pitch their viewpoint on Mount Everest and let you know all about it. You have to understand that even if you say, “well, let’s agree to disagree.” These yappers are going off so dang much, they haven’t heard a word you said. Their tangent has prevented them from stopping for air or consider that you’re not interested in continuing the conversation. You might even be sitting there completely befuddled, because you’re not even sure how the conversation even began in the first place? They are the ones that usually bring up subjects where they’ve rehearsed their rant of a monologue in thorough detail. They can be an elderly retired person pointing at something on the television as you are nearby, then they let you have it, going off on you. They can be a young, fresh out of college know-it-all. They can be mid-30s, seasoned professional. These people can be any age, any ethnicity, any gender preference. It doesn’t matter. They come from all walks of life and can be customers, associates, peers, friends, in-laws, family, acquaintances, or total strangers.

No matter their background, they can all be a P.I.T.A. and I am not talking about P.E.T.A. (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals). I am talking about P.I.T.A. (Pain In The A**). Here’s the thing you need to know about the overtly, in-your-face, opinionated- they are not very good listeners and definitely not the reasonable type. They will say things without taking body cues, even when you straight-up tell them, “I’d rather not discuss this anymore.” Why? Well you see, they are too busy venting on and on about their opinion, clueless if they are pissing you off. To them, their opinion is the accurate one. What do you do with someone like this? How the heck do you deal with an argumentative, combative, opinionated, extroverted, know-it-all?

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  1. If you are not too pissed off by this point, you can try changing the subject.
  2. If you are in a situation that prevents you from leaving, you can try letting them know that you’d rather drop the entire subject.
  3. If they are not listening, which is likely the case, then you may need to resort to being a duck.

WARNING: What ever you do, do not try and ask questions, egg them on in any way, or further encourage a P.I.T.A. This only makes their behavior worse.

I have realized when dealing with a passionate P.I.T.A., option 1. and option 2. hardly ever work.  If anything, they are in mid-sentence still going on and on. You aren’t talking to a level-headed person, but a know-it-all. They will likely not shut-up, not even if you ask them nicely. If this is the case with you, you’re at option 3. You have to be the duck, floating on top of the water calm as can be, but underneath the water your feet are moving fast. The P.I.T.A. does not need to see your feet moving, all they need to see is your little duck body floating along as calm as can be. Inside, you might be ready to choke them out, no need to give them another ounce of your energy. You take your beak, get some of that oil from your preen gland, and rub it all over your feathers. You let that oil make you waterproof, let those words roll right off your back. No reason to get nasty, no reason to even tell them about your opinion, no need to get sucked into their negative energy and their need to debate someone. Remember, the world does NOT revolve around you. This is NOT about you. Someone’s opinions, beliefs, ideas, perspective in life has a lot to do with many things outside of your control.

So, quack along little duck, you got an entire pond ahead of you and plenty of oil on those feathers to make you water resistant.

WaterDuck

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Solution –

 

Now…you don’t think about it again LOL-samu-chan.gif #done

An Open Letter to Hillary Clinton —

An Open Letter to Hillary Clinton

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Dear Mrs. Clinton,

Congratulations on securing the Democratic nomination for president of the United States. It’s historical! It’s liberating to women! You’ve broken the glass ceiling! But at what cost? As the mother of a beautiful young daughter, my desire is to teach her every day that she is priceless, valuable and precious beyond anything […]

via An Open Letter to Hillary Clinton —

 

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El niño que siempre fui

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Allow me to make an important opinion of mine clear; Being a woman having a baby does NOT make you a MOTHER. 

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Being a mom means more than having given birth to a child. It’s loving and knowing a soul before you even see it. It’s carrying and caring for a life completely dependant on you for survival. It’s giving air to the lungs that grew within you, and sight to the eyes that will never see you as anything but mommy. It’s sleepless nights, its nursing scratches and scrapes, it’s being stern and protective. It’s teaching them to talk, to walk and to eventually run. It’s learning to hand your child to a stranger to let them teach what you cannot at times. It’s bracing them for a fall, and dusting them off after they do. It’s seeing them cry and not knowing how to fix it, so you sit on the floor and hold them and cry right along beside them. It’s teaching them that they are smart, capable, funny and giving them the security to do great things. It’s building their self-esteem, supporting their dreams and loving them unconditionally. It’s letting them go, letting them fail and teaching them how to get back up. It’s going without so that they don’t have to, and being OK with it.

Being a mother is a gift that is unimaginable to any woman who does not have a child in their life. It’s a connection that is unmatched and insurmountable in any form or other relationship.  It’s a love that grows continually, a love that always wants more and better. It’s being terrified that you can’t prevent pain, injustice, heartbreak and at times even death. It’s laughing at jokes that aren’t even funny, but the way they say it makes it’s hilarious. It’s listening to stories that go on and on without a point. It’s always being available for the “Mommy watch me!” yells and “Mommy I need you” pleas.  It’s drowning out the word MOM repeated over and over in attempts to get your attention. Its songs sang out of tune and settling squabbles with siblings. It’s being mean, and teaching hard lessons, that hurt you inside so deep you want to cry, but you must stand strong with resolve. It’s being strong for them when you are weak. It’s smiling when you want to cry, and crying when you’re smiling with pride.

It’s looking through photographs and feeling your heart swell with love and happiness when you see the beauty, the happiness and life in your child’s smile and eyes. It’s confusion, mistakes, uncharted territory and blindfolded guessing. It’s snuggling on the couch watching a movie, braiding hair till your fingers hurt, it’s being woken up early on Saturday morning because they want to crawl in bed and be close to your heart. It’s having the worst day and having them hug you and tell you “mommy I love you”, and needing nothing more.
It’s a blessing, a gift, a relationship that never ends and a love that never dies. It’s the best thing I have ever become, the greatest love I have ever felt and the best part about being me.

The Meaning of Being a Mother
– – by Susan Diranian
The meaning of being a mother is virtually endless. A mother is a protector, disciplinarian and friend. A mother is a selfless, loving human who must sacrifice many of their wants and needs for the wants and needs of their children. A mother works hard to make sure their child is equipped with the knowledge, skills and abilities to make it as a competent human being. Being a mother is perhaps the hardest, most rewarding job a woman will ever experience.
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The Meaning of Being a Mother
The Meaning of Being a Mother
By Susan Diranian Apr 24, 2015
The meaning of being a mother is virtually endless. A mother is a protector, disciplinarian and friend. A mother is a selfless, loving human who must sacrifice many of their wants and needs for the wants and needs of their children. A mother works hard to make sure their child is equipped with the knowledge, skills and abilities to make it as a competent human being. Being a mother is perhaps the hardest, most rewarding job a woman will ever experience.

Unconditional Love
From the day they are born, a child will test your patience. No matter what they do or say, being a mother means you will love your child unconditionally.

Children who receive love and attention from their mother are less likely later on to fall in love with someone who offers love conditionally, whether with behavior control or abuse. Show your child how much you love them with hugs and kisses. Listen to your child as they recount their day, play games or slip a note in their lunch box letting them know how much you love them (Ref 1).
Safety and Security
When a woman becomes pregnant, it is her responsibility to provide a safe and secure environment while her baby grows. This responsibility continues once she becomes a mother, whether it’s ensuring her child has a roof over its head to keeping monsters away at night and everything in between. Providing your child with a safe and secure environment protects them from abuse and harm as well as help boost their child’s mental and emotional development. Provide a safe, healthy environment for children by reducing risks and stress as well as keeping an eye out on children.

Teacher and Disciplinarian
Being a mother means being there to teach your child important rules and roles of life, from being an empathetic human being to learning how to be responsible of one’s actions. As your child grows up, they are going to face an onslaught of differing thoughts, opinions and values from their friends, the movies, internet, television and magazines. A mother will help guide their child to figure out their goals and values in life as well as teach them the importance of an education, manners and more. A mother will also discipline their child, a skill that will benefit children throughout their life as well as at school, work and life at home

Parenting is more than cuddling your precious newborn in your arms, counting her fingers and toes, feeding her every two hours and keeping her diaper dry. This is the easy part. You must guide her through life, making sure her decisions are the right ones. Some of these include the manner in which she treats others. Respect for authority includes everyone from you to her teachers. Respect begins in the home and, although you may not realize it, your child must also respect herself.

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♡♡♡

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And taa daa! Today ♡

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Esta mañana, de camino a la oficina, escuchaba un programa de radio cómo preguntaban a un grupo de alumnos de primaria acerca de qué es la Constitución Española. Las respuestas, no hace falta que os lo diga, eran de lo más divertidas, como casi todo cuando te lo cuenta un niño.

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Healthy “Stuff”😉

Healthy “Stuff”😉

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the GOOD “STUFF” 😉

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Namely…like HONEY, COCONUT (oil, milk & any other way) and Lemon (or just Citrus

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We can’t forget about raw organic apple cider vinegar either!

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And ALOE …of course

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TURMERIC …we certainly can not leave out turmeric!

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10 Turmeric Benefits: Superior to Medications?

Raw Organic Turmeric Spice in a Bowl ** Note: Shallow depth of field
Raw Organic Turmeric Spice

~ AND POMEGRANATE! 

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♡♡♡

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I LOVE it when it’s growing in my own nackyatd!

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~ In the meantime. ..I’m going out of town. Getting to a “clear my head” place 😉

I’m not writing…just reminding. Old habits die hard so at least i know with myself…i need reminders.
There is SO MUCH on Google about all of this. Too much for me to list by far!
So, I’ll leave a couple/few links, otherwise its photos; that helps me remember 😉


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French shallot, raw honey and apple cider vinegar salad dressing

http://www.eyecandypopper.com/french-shallot-raw-honey-and-apple-cider-vinegar-salad-dressing/

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Raw Honey and Lemon Cough Syrup with Coconut Oil

Author: The Coconut Mama
Ingredients
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
¼ cup local raw honey
2 tablespoons coconut oil

Instructions:

Honey and Lemon Cough Syrup with Coconut Oil

Where MY #honey comes from…

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About Valley Honey Company

Our family has been in the valley since the 1880’s. Has been involved in mining, ranching, and farming. Due to the decline of farmable achreage in Maricopa county, We then evolved into a migratory beekeeping operation. This is a family owned business, we intend to expand and grow. By keeping ourselves small we can control the quality of our product.

 http://valleyhoneyco.com/~

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http://tasteforlife.com/diet-nutrition/health/benefits-coconut-oil

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BEAUTIFUL NATURE!!!

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..Here is What Happens When You Wash Your Face with Apple Cider Vinegar – Holistic Living Tips

Here is What Happens When You Wash Your Face with Apple Cider Vinegar

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Coconut Oil Teeth Whitening How to Whiten Teeth with Coconut Oil How Long Results Instructions

Coconut Oil Teeth Whitening- How to Whiten Teeth with Coconut Oil

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OMG…I am officially now a member of “I eat this with a spoon” club!

lemons – Page 2 – dawns-ad-lib.com®
https://dawns-ad-lib.com/tag/lemons/page/2/

 

Grapefruit herbal tea with spices and honey in a glass teapot and cup on a dark wooden background
Grapefruit herbal tea with spices and honey

 

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Lily, Lucy & GooGoo

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Lily, Lucy & GooGoo

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They’ve always waited for her to get home from school. They can tell time.

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It worked wonders for my purpose of getting her a puppy…it did indeed fill a void.  The same with the kitten from her daddy. LOVE …that’s all.

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A Place to Love Dogs  ♡ A Place to Love Dogs

 

I found this blog that best describes our family situation. Lily’s family is small…as much love and nurturing as any large one…but still her dad & i (her grandma) is her immediate family; with 2 aunts (his sisters) who are AWESOME! Everyone in our little circle steps up to the plate..to give her the best life possible. And her pets, again, absolutely worked at filling any void. They’ve been like siblings, for real.

beautiful little girls embracing her dog
beautiful little girls embracing her dog looking at the sea

A Pet is a Good Choice for a Sibling for an only child

http://www.genonly.com/single-post/2016/1/6/Why-a-pet-could-be-a-better-choice-than-a-sibling-for-your-first-born

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♡ Lily & her daddy

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And her cousins were as close as siblings

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LOVE

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Grandma & Daddy

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Grandma with Lucy during school

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Horses are great too!!!!

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Cheater Chicken and Dumplings

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CHEATER CHICKEN AND DUMPLINGS

by Sam the Cooking Guy

 

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Okay…Sam, I am a grandma and I made a roast chicken. BUT…I’m all for those rotisserie chickens!
Otherwise this is classic chicken and dumplings 😀

I always watch you too; does that help? ♡

Serves 6 people

Unless you’re already a grandma, this’ll for sure make you feel like one.

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
2 sticks celery, diced
1 1/2 cups diced, carrots
1 yellow onion, diced
1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 garlic cloves, crushed
3 tablespoons Vermouth
1/4 cup flour
2 cups deli-roasted chicken, shredded
1 quart chicken broth
Dumplings:

3/4 cup flour
2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup milk
large pinch dried thyme
Kosher salt and pepper to season
DIRECTIONS

Heat oil and butter in a large pot over medium heat and add celery, carrot, onion, thyme, and garlic –  cook for 5 mins until softened
Then add vermouth and flour, and mix until it’s dry and crumbly
Add broth and mix thoroughly
Add the cooked chicken and the broth and bring to a simmer & cook until thickened and heated though, about 10 minutes
While it heats put flour, baking powder and thyme in a large bowl, season with salt & pepper and mix well to combine
Add the milk and mix until just enough for it to come together to a loose wet dough
Drop spoonfuls (about a tablespoon and a half) on top of the chicken mixture but keeping them from touching too much, bring to a slow simmer and put on the lid cook about 10 minutes
Serve and enjoy.
LOOK…I HAD LEFTOVERS…it’s what we do.  #grandmas

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http://www.thecookingguy.com/cookbook/cheater-chicken-and-dumplings

 

 

Well-Spring Of Truth

#peace, #love, #gratitude, #God, #guidance, #blogshare, thankful, 

Life Love God

ContemplationExpress yourself completely,
then keep quiet.
Be like the forces of nature:
when it blows, there is only wind;
when it rains, there is only rain;
when the clouds pass, the sun shines through.
If you open yourself to the Tao,
you are at one with the Tao
and you can embody it completely.
If you open yourself to insight,
you are at one with insight
and you can use it completely.
If you open yourself to loss,
you are at one with loss
and you can accept it completely.
Open yourself to the Tao,
then trust your natural responses;
and everything will fall into place.

Tao Te Ching v23

Line and Feather

Brand New DayGod’s Light

The light and love of God warm my heart and brighten my days.

During the short days of winter, we see less of the sun, but it hasn’t disappeared. The earth has moved, but the sun is still…

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