Thursday, May 30, 2013

Thankful Thursday


On a shelf in my home I have this cute wooden apple that my friend and neighbor gave to me years ago.  Along the side it says, “friends to the core”.  I met Kathy years ago when we bought our first home.  Another neighbor mentioned to me that a woman down the street was home schooling and since we were also, I went to knock on Kathy’s door.  I am so blessed that we met that day.  Kathy is a wonderful friend and although our families are now grown and we live thousands of miles apart, I still count her as one of my closest friends.

One thing I remember about Kathy, she is is always cooking up something good and she likes to check out new recipes.  She was the one who told me the recipe for the best oatmeal raisin cookies is in the Colorado Cache cookbook…and they are the best.  She shared with me a microwave peanut brittle recipe I have used at Christmas many times.  She showed me how to make eggrolls and shared that great recipe.  And she also gave me a recipe for zucchini bread.  And quirky as it may sound, I am very thankful for that recipe!  I have never really liked baking or been very good at it, but this recipe I have done pretty well with.  It makes two nice loaves and is just really tasty!  I have been sharing it in the Polo Club quite a bit.  I have taken a loaf of bread with a nice card to several residents when there has been a death or illness.  I even got really brave and made several loaves for our Homeowner’s Association meeting this past Tuesday.  Not only did the residents seem “wowed” because I made it, I received several nice compliments.  So I have found myself saying over and over, Thank You Lord. 

Here’s the recipe:

3 eggs, 1 cup oil, 2 cups sugar, 3 cups peeled, grated zucchini, 2 teaspoons vanilla, 3 cups flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 scat teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, 1/2 cup chopped nuts.

Beat eggs until light and foamy.  Add oil, sugar, zucchini, and vanilla.  Mix well.  Add flour, soda, baking powder, and salt.  Mix well.  Add nuts.  Bake in two greased, floured loaf pans and bake at 325* for one hour.  Cool on rack.

I grow zucchini in the garden each summer just for this recipe.  I grate it (I do not peel it as recipe says) and freeze it so I have it all year long.  The bread freezes well too.  I made mine for the Homeowner’s meeting before I went to New York because I knew I would not have time when I returned.  I’m planning on freezing some just to have on hand for those uncertain times when I would like to give it out.  I have used the mini pans too and taken it to residents who live alone. 

All that to say, this little recipe has been used to bless others!  And each time I make it, I am blessed to think of my friend Kathy!  See you in July Kath!

Sherry and Kathy Huryk

Saturday, May 25, 2013

How to Dress for Ice Cream

There’s an ice cream truck that comes every evening to Ben and  Andrea’s neighborhood.  In fact it stops right in front of their house.  The neighbors kind of hang and wait and even call the driver by name.  “Hey Tony,  a double with chocolate sprinkles!”  And Tony calculates the cost, “Three regulars and two smalls, just make it eight!”  We tried really hard to get dinner over before Tony rolled into town!  We waited and even began to wonder if Tony would come. We were waiting and listening for the familiar music.  Ben googled Softeez ice cream and the music began playing over the computer…and the kiddos began running to the door!  Ben, of course was the only one laughing!  The extra time gave Elaine and Nolan time to dress appropriately for Tony’s arrival!


Elaine said “This keeps my neck nice and warm!”   I guess the ice cream makes it chilly going down ??

Elaine with ice cream form the truck


Elaine has a chocolate beard going here…and I guess her neck warmed up!


Ostrich feathers all gone here too…


…and a chocolate “cheese”!!


Thursday, May 23, 2013

Thankful Thursday

This is our leadership circle from this year in Bible Study Fellowship.  We have met together on Saturday mornings since September and again on Monday nights for our class time.


This circle of women has blessed, challenged and encouraged me as we have studied God’s Word together.  They have shared so freely and transparently what God is showing them and how they are applying it in their life.  Thirty-one women who have said yes to God’s call on their life to serve Him. They have been faithful and committed. Many have had difficult things and trials come into their life this year and their “stick-to-it-iveness” (as my Mom would call it) has been a wonderful testimony of their dependence on the Lord  to do that which he has asked them to do.  How thankful I am for their part in my life.  Saturday we had our last Leader’s meeting…a breakfast Fellowship  at the Polo Club. (Part of my wild, wicked, wonderful week!)

img_7057Standing: Joanna, Annie, Cindy, Kristen, Joan, Tish, Bev, Sarah, Caroline, Liza, Susan, Debra, Alethea, and Gail. Seated: April, Tina, Debbie, Heather, Divina, Bethany, Rhonda, Carol. On the Floor: Gayle, Diana, LaRon, Julia, and Laura. We had two leaders absent, Patricia and Michelle.


This is Gail and Alethea.  Alethea is our teaching leader.  She prepares the training for our leaders each week and the lecture for our class.  Gail is our substitute teaching leader.  She brings the lecture in Alethea's absence.  She also teaches several seminars a year, presents the Welcome class information to new women, and leads discussion groups in a leader’s absence.  She is very busy, and flexible!! These two women have shown me humility and excellence in the way they serve!


This is me, Alethea, Gail and Debbie.  Together we make up the class staff.  Debbie is the children’s supervisor.  She trains the children’s leaders each week and heads up the School Program.  These women are more than co-laborers, they have blessed my life with their friendship!!


This is me, Gayle, April, and Tina. We make up the admin team for our class.  Gayle is the class secretary.  She once shared that she has “finally found her niche in BSF.”  I intend to remind her of that and keep her serving for as long as possible!  April has been the other side of my brain for several years now.  She always seems to read my mind, often before the thought arrives!  Tina is new to our team this year but it seems like she has been here with us all along!  I am particularly grateful that she and Gayle handle the technical side of things.  These three women have committed to serving again next year and for the first time in several years, we will begin class with a fully staffed and trained admin team!  Yeah!!!


These two ladies are Michelle and Ellen, the asst. treasurer and treasurer! Michelle stepped in midyear to be our assistant  and I am so pleased she loves what she is doing.  Ellen has been our treasurer for two years now.  The treasurer and asst. treasurer are part of the admin team, along with our class hosts.   And a couple of women  faithfully stay after class to wind up our ropes and help pick up anything that has been displaced during the night.  Unfortunately, I did not snap a picture of them…though I brought my camera, I got a little distracted and forgot.  

When the Lord asks you to do a certain task, He provides all that is necessary to complete that task.  He gives Himself, His Word, His strength and enabling, to name a few resources.  He also seems to provide you with this wonderful side benefit…other believers.  They encourage, help, work and teach all along the way.   They laugh with you, cry with you, and pray with you!   That is what I have been given many times and this year particularly, with these women who love the Lord!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Wild, Wicked, and Wonderful Week

Last week was definitely wild, wicked and wonderful…ever have one of those?  I had so much I wanted to get done and I had so much I needed to get done.  Of course, the “needed” always usurps the “wanted”…I think that’s what makes it wicked.  Trying to do it all, makes it kind of wild!  And simply making it through to enjoy those events you want to be able to enjoy, wonderful!  Let’s forget the wild and wicked parts and let me share with you the wonderful!

We have some long time friends, Jack and Jana Pine.  We attended church  together for many years.   Our first Sunday at that church, Wesley was still a toddler.  We took him to the nursery and Jana was working there.  She said, “I know You!”  I was pretty sure, not.  But it turns out, Jana and Leah, Wally’s sister, were college roommates!  Wally had taken her for a spin on his motorcycle way back then!  That short reintroduction began a long friendship between us.  And particularly between two of our sons, Wesley and Timothy. 

Wes and Timothy

Wesley and Timothy have stayed close through the years.  Even when Carrie came along.  This past Saturday, Tim and Carrie were married.  We hosted their rehearsal dinner at the Polo Club. 


The food was yummy…gyros from the Shish Kebab Grill in Denver.  The owners are neighbors of Jack and Jana.


Here’s our wonderful friends, Jack and Jana.  They are the parents of nine children.  They have been through tragedy and difficulty without faltering in their love and trust of the Lord.  Jana is one of those friends who holds you accountable in your own walk with the Lord.


Here is Jana with her girls.  They have all grown up so much since the last time I have seen them altogether!  Julie, Elisabeth, Jana, Olivia, and Joanna.


Here is Tim, the groom, and his wonderful bride, Carrie


Friday was Wesley’s birthday and Tim was happy to share his occasion with Wes and we had birthday cake for dessert.


My Mom and Dad dropped by after the dinner to say hello to Wes and wish him a Happy Birthday!  One of the wonderful things about our friendship…Wes fits in with the Pines and Tim fits in with the Godby’s.  So Wesley’s grandparents are Tim’s grandparents too!


Tim and his brothers and Wesley came by the Polo Club on Saturday to dress for the wedding.  I wish I would have had all the brothers stand together for a picture, they were so very handsome in their wedding garb.  But all I got was one of Tim.


Wesley was Tim’s best man.  At the reception Wes gave the “best man” speech…he did pretty good at honoring his friend.  Wonderful!


Saturday was a long day but filled with wonderful moments with our wonderful friends!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Happy Birthday Wesley!!

Today is Wesley Keith’s Birthday!!  He came home this weekend to be the best man in his best friend’s wedding.  Moms say thist a lot, but I’ll say it again…”When did you grow up?  Where did the years go?”   Well today,  my baby boy turns twenty-four!  So, so very hard to believe! 


How thankful we are for you Wes, you have always brought joy and surprise to our family! 


Every every year I look back at the photos, laugh and cry at all the memories and try to share one or two of them.  This year I got a little bit of help.  I asked Andrea and Kenny to share something funny they remember and also share a nice wish for your special day. 

We’ll let Andrea share first..she is the oldest and wisest, right?  Just who was driving the ATV that day?  I remember you were doing donuts and you weren’t supposed to!!

Andrea and Wes after dumping the ATV

Dear Wesley -

It's your birthday! Is my little brother really 24?!? When Mom asked me to write down a few things, there were a couple of memories that immediately came to my mind. Are you ready to be embarrassed?

It's a silly thing to remember, really, but I have never forgotten this from when you were a tiny guy (back when I was still taller than you...). Dad was putting together a set of shelving, and he was doing it laying down on its side. When he stood the shelves up, you looked up at its height and said, "Holy 'mokes!" You always were the cute one!

I recall how soft and smooth your hair was after a buzz cut. I also recall that I had to pay you a quarter every time I rubbed your head, because you disliked it so much. I probably could have payed for college with those quarters, because I always enjoyed irritating you!

I also remember that it was you who begged Kenny and I to play Barbies one day - when we were probably all much too old to be doing so. In case you don't believe that it actually happened, just ask Mom. I'm sure she still has the picture somewhere!

It was also probably your idea to hijack one of said Barbies a few years later. You loaded him with Black Cat fire crackers and attempted to blow him to pieces, just like the evil kid on Toy Story. I don't think you ever replaced that Ken doll. I will be sure to let Elaine know it was your fault when she inherits the Barbie dolls!

It didn't take long for you to grow up. You kept growing and soon you were taller than me. I dubbed you my "big little brother." It was you who gave me the nickname "Sparky". I'm not sure why, or when, but it stuck.

Now you are on your own...really on your own. You live in a different state, you have your own apartment, and a new job. My birthday wish for you this year is threefold. I pray you will find a good church and get involved. I pray the Lord will lead you to some new and godly friends as you get established in your new place. And may you always keep on the ascending plane, taking your relationship with the Lord to the next level.

Happy Birthday, Wes! Love, Sparky

Here is Kenny’s memories and wish.  I’m sure there is so much more he could have shared…your adventures with him were many!  Here you two are all ready for AWANA’s “Pick Your Nose Night!”  Kenny went as a cow and you as a warthog!


I love my brother Wesley very much and I have many things that I remember about him as we grew up.  Here are a few of the humorous highlights that I thought of.

  • I remember when he was being potty trained and his reward for going to the bathroom was gum drops, but Wes called them snakes.
  • We used to take the cats, and Gypsy, and we would fluff up ones side of a bean-bag-chair. Then one of us would hold the dog or cat on the low side of the chair while the other jumped on the fluffed side and launch them through the air.
  • I remember one of the first times he was able to go elk hunting, Wes kept asking Dad what would happen if he shot one elk and the bullet went all the way through and killed a second elk?  Dad said, “it was possible, but not very likely.” Well that very time Wesley killed two elk with one shot. From then on we tried to do it that way.
  • The last thing I will mention is the times we used to have blow-gun wars with each other.  We would take the shaft of the dart and turn it around so we were shooting each other with the blunt end. One time in particular I was hiding in the closet and no sooner had I peeked around the corner to see where he was and I felt a dart stick me in the crease of my nose with a blunt end. We had some great times together.

Wesley, you have been given much talent and ability for specific things in your life. As you have just moved out on your own and begun a new chapter in your life, don’t leave all the things you have been taught behind like so many Christians of your generation. Stay involved in the work of God no matter where you are or what you do. Use the talents and abilities God has given you for His glory. Remember what it says in Philippians 1:6, “Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.” I love you Wesley and hope you have a wonderful birthday and an even better year. ~Kenny

scan0009And here is that two-elk, one-shot kill!!  (So relieved there were two tags to go with it!)

Wes as you have blessed our lives, you are very blessed by your siblings!


You will always be “tops” with us!

Wes and Gypsy on the roof



Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it.

I Corinthians 9:24

Happy Birthday Wesley!!! Dad and I love you so much and are looking forward to cake with you tonight!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Thankful Thursday

If you have heard some happy shouting in the last couple of days it might be due to the fact that we are welcoming twin grandbabies!! 

andrea pregnant with twins

Last week I told Andrea I’d like to see how big she was…and this photo popped up on Facebook…She said, and I quote…”Got one baby pressing hard on my left hip, and the other digging into my right ribs.  Lots of Braxton Hicks last week, but hardly a one this week. I had hoped to have these babies in April…” Maybe those words were some kind of prayer because on April 30 at 2:30 am I got a call from Andrea.  Her water had broke and they were heading to the hospital.  I lay awake for a long time, thinking, praying and getting excited!  I had finally fallen back to sleep when I get another call, just before six.  They were checked into the hospital.  I asked if they took a taxi this time?  No, they drove.  Ben was able to find a close spot…two blocks away!  I kind of laughed.  Well, that is a pretty good spot for NY!  She said was now 4cm dilated and I remember thinking, “this is going to be awhile yet.”  Then about 7:30 Wally interrupted my shower to show me a picture…Two beautiful babies had arrived safe and healthy!  Liberty Alethia was the first to arrive at 8:30 (EST) weighing 5.11lb.  Nehemiah Elliot followed at 9:05 weighing 6.1lbs. 

the twins!!

My shouts have changed a little bit into ooing and ahhing as the photos start rolling out!. I just can’t believe it…two teeny tiny sweet babies!  Mom is doing well.  She sounds tired and I’m afraid that is not going to change any time soon!  But she looks great, doesn’t she?


Aren’t they precious?  Yesterday when I was on the phone with Andrea, they had just brought Nehemiah back from his circumcision and she was changing his diaper…I got to hear all kinds of little baby noises going on


Every time I go to say their names, I have to stop and think…they have big names for such little bundles!  They are heading home today and then the real adventure begins.  I can hardly wait to hear about Elaine and Nolan’s responses!  They’ve got big changes coming!  And then I can hardly wait to go and pick them all up in a big hug!  That won’t be until May 19.  Until then, thank you Grandma Hamilton for being there now and for all those who will step in to help!  We are all so very blessed! 

So, so much to be thankful for today!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Celebrating Adoption (Part Two)

Editor’s Note:  I have a guest blogger!  I never thought I would say that!  And I did let Alethea know my audience is about 25!  But she said “yes” to writing this anyway.  Because even if it is only 25, it is 25 people who will be impacted by her passion, adoption! So, please meet my friend Alethea and enjoy the read!

doug and alethea and girls

A few weeks ago (sorry, Sherry, this took me way to long!) I had the opportunity to invite and was blessed to have so many wonderful friends join me for Colorado Christian Services’ (our adoption agency) annual Ladies Event.

This is an event that supports the adoption agency my husband and I used to adopt our two girls! We have been so thankful for this agency and the amount of love they have shown us! The caseworkers pour their hearts into each family- and they work incredibly long and hard hours as they walk alongside each family that is navigating the adventure of adoption. It is such a privilege to support them and I am so very grateful to each of my friends who came to the Ladies Event- for it really is one small way for me to say thank you and give back to these woman for everything they have done for my family and me!

I simply cannot say enough about Colorado Christian Services (CCS)! Adoption is not an easy journey. Before one even begins, especially for a couple who has struggled and been unsuccessful in having biological children, much grieving and soul searching has to happen. Thankfully you don’t have to have all your “issues” worked out before meeting with our agency. I remember being afraid and defensive, as I said, it is a hard journey…but every one of the women from the director to all of the caseworkers, and even the administration staff and CCS were so loving and gracious. They gently taught, grieved, prayed, held our hands and cheered us on!  I loved, and more and more every day I am increasingly thankful for the training provided to us by CCS- and most of that training happened in our first initial meetings with them! I still think back to, quote, and hold on to, truths they shared with us. It has been invaluable in navigating so many of the uniqueness of adoption.

All that said - we clearly love Colorado Christian Services! I say it often, but we will never ever be able to express our gratitude or pay them back even in some small way for all they did for us! And that leads me to what the results were in walking through this journey with CCS. My husband and I are the parents to two beautiful, amazing, wonderful little girls! We have a 4 almost 5 year old, and an almost 2 year old! They are the joy of our lives~ and they have taught me more about God’s love and grace then anything else in this world!

taliah and eliana

I could never have imagined the road that God would lead my husband and I on- we simply thought (like most of the world) that you get married and in a few years you have kids. Oh, for it to have been that easy! But God in His sovereignty had a much better and bigger plan for us!  However to get there included several long, dark, years filled with heartache and disappointment. Yet, it also was filled with sweet forced dependence on our Savior- for there was nowhere else and no one else to cling to! Yet, we have learned that this- the dark, the hard, the trying times- really does produce joy unparalleled to anything this world offers! For our joy is not in the temporary and fleeting it is in the eternal! And our hope refreshed came in meeting and working with CCS.  Our joy expressed came when not once but twice a little baby girl- beautiful beyond words- was placed in our arms! I will never, ever be able to describe to you the overwhelming flood of emotion- joy, love, fear, gratitude- that overtakes you when you hold a baby given to you by the most selfless woman on the planet! To be given the gift of a child, not because you are deserving of, not because you are the best or most perfect parent in this world, but because their birthmother loves them beyond expression!  And that they have chosen you, entrusted you to love, care, teach, and hold their little one is truly a miracle- bigger even then the parting of the red sea, I promise! This is the joy that lives and breathes in my house everyday! These are the miracles that call me “mommy”, a word I never believed would echo in my household! This is God’s grace given in abundance over and over and over! God is a God of miracles; I know this and live this every day. God is a God of good gifts- and He has given to me in abundance! God is ever working for our good and His glory- even as He takes us through the suffering!


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