Welcome Phew! It is hot here! And muggy! I believe we are in for one of our hottest summers in a while, and it started back in May. We have a whole week of forecasted mid and upper 90’s, and no end in sight. This has me sticky and sweaty. I don’t know about you, but I find myself quite grateful for air conditioning this time of year. But even with the heat, summer is still my favorite season. With a more relaxed schedule, longer daylight hours, and fun things to do just about every day, what’s not to love? We’re going to take advantage of the season and have a Summer Celebration Kick-Off Week here on the blog. Each day this week, we’ll be sharing a few summer memories and some tasty summer recipes and treats. Of course, we’ll still have our daily scripture, as well. I’m looking forward to it, and hope you are too.
Food For Thought With all this heat and humidity, I have been sweating plenty. Especially as we’ve been taking care of some yard work and cleaning up some tree damage from a storm a week ago. I don’t necessarily like to sweat, but it’s a part of life, and really necessary. Perspiration is our body’s natural cooling system. Without it, we would be quite ill, and possibly even die. Whether I’m off on a run or a hike or mowing the yard, perspiration goes with the territory. All of this sweatin’ got me to thinking about that popular saying, “Don’t sweat the small stuff.” This phrase even became the catchy title of the best-selling book by Richard Carlson, which aims to help us avoid being overwhelmed by all of life’s little annoyances.
All my life, even at a very young age, I have been sweating the small stuff. What a useless waste of energy! It is only been in the past year that I have recognized exactly how big of a waste of time, energy, and sleep this worry really was. Luckily, I have a renewed faith and hope that will help me give the small stuff over to God. As the saying goes, don’t sweat the small stuff, and it’s all small stuff. Exactly! For God, all of these troubles, trials, and difficulties are small potatoes. And I don’t have to sweat it. God is there in the details, through my prayers and petitions, no matter how big or small they may be, He can handle them. I can cast my anxieties on Him and He will bear the burdens for me. After living a life of anxiety and the feeling I needed to control every detail, it has been enlightening, and lightening, as in lifting the heavy weight off of me, to know I don’t have to sweat the small stuff, or big stuff anymore. God’s got this.
While I won’t promise you a sweat-free summer, physically speaking, I can tell you that there’s no need to sweat the small stuff if you can turn over these needs and requests to God. Pray, trust, breathe and believe.
Recommended Reading Anxious For Nothing by Max Lucado, Thomas Nelson Publishing, copyright 2017
Today’s Recipe Summer food is so good. I love grilled burgers, dogs, brats, and chicken. I love creamy potato salad and coleslaw. And all the fresh fruits and veggies from the garden and farmer’s market, yummy! There is no shortage of good food around our home this time of year, whether it be for grilling out, picnics in the park, church potlucks, or a simple supper with friends. Sometimes I take tried-and-true favorites to our gatherings, but other times I feel like sharing something a little fresh and different. Today we have the easiest Summer Sunset Salad. I call it Summer Sunset because of the layered colors in the glass bowl, but it’s really just good quality fresh fruit. If you can wash and cut fruit, you can serve this. Get a big glass bowl and layer in the freshest, sweetest melon, peaches, nectarines, and berries you can find, chill and serve. Nothing else…let the sweetness of the seasonal fruit do all the talking in this dish. It’s a refreshing side to your next cookout or a delightful addition to your summer breakfasts or lunches.
Use a large glass bowl to layer these seasonal fruits to show off their summer splendor.
All you need is one large ripe cantaloupe, 4 medium peaches or nectarines, or a combination of the two, and about 2 pounds of fresh strawberries. You could also add some cubed pink watermelon, if you like.
When I’m shopping for a cantaloupe, I smell the “naval” on the end. If it smells like sweet melon, it’s usually a good pick. The one I picked this weekend was amazing.
To pick fresh peaches and nectarines, they should lean toward a darker or deeper red or peach color, rather than lighter, and should yield a little when gently pressed with your thumb.
Strawberries should have a bright red color and don’t forget to look at the bottom and sides of your carton, to be sure mold hasn’t started to develop in hidden areas of the container. Do not wash or cut strawberries until ready to use.
Wash and cut fruit in desired pieces (you do not have to wash the rind of the melon!) Layer in bowl from lightest to darkest in color and chill. The flavors will mingle, yet each fruit will retain its individual flavor. Cool and refreshing!