To CINDY W for winning the drawing for Beverly Allen's BLOOM AND DOOM!

Lisa, Gina, Jen and Carla Gade. MISTLETOE MEMORIES at #10 on the ECPA bestsellers list for fiction!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Why Hockey Is Better

    Okay, we're mostly supposed to talk about writing here.  Or books.  Or movies.  Or recipes.  Something with story, right?  (I'm sure recipes all have a story.  Mostly, when I cook, the outcome is always in doubt, and that's usually a good story ingredient!)
    I believe sports is about story, too.  Will the good guys (my team, of course) beat the bad guys? A rivalry has been building all season and now it's the thrilling final clash, who will emerge victorious? Evil Player A put a dirty hit on Saintly Player B, how will Player B's posse react when the teams meet again? Oh the drama!
    April is a big sports month.  The baseball season is getting started.  Major golf championships are underway.  Soccer is going strong. The regular basketball season is almost over, and their playoffs loom.  Hockey's regular season is over, and their playoffs have just begun.
    I know everyone has his or her own sports preference (or preference to not follow any sport), but my choice is hockey.  Hands down. For me it has the most excitement, the most drama, the most heart. The playoffs, especially in the early rounds, are full of surprises and upsets and interesting storylines.  It's the reason they wrote that song "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year."  (Many people think that's a Christmas song, but I'm sure it must have started out being about the NHL playoffs and got commandeered by someone who needed something for an early-December TV show and changed most of the words.  Come on,  the line "It's the hap-happiest season of all" HAD to have been written about hockey!)
    Case in point:  Richard Peverley.
    Rich Peverley is a member of my favorite hockey team, the Dallas Stars.  The team was playing the Columbus Blue Jackets on the night of March 10, 2014, when, six minutes into play, the game was abruptly halted.  Head coach Lindy Ruff and the rest of the Stars were frantic over on the bench.  Peverley had collapsed.  His heart had stopped.
    For forty-five long minutes, nobody in the arena or watching on TV knew what had happened.  I knew Peverley had some heart issues and had missed the first three weeks of the season because of it.  When the time dragged on and our regular broadcast team (the wonderful Ralph and Razor) counted up and said that Peverley was the only one missing, I was afraid he had died.  He had died.
    Thanks to the quick work of the training staff and the doctors available at the game (and the mercy of God), he was revived.  One of the first things Peverly asked when he was conscious again was how much time was left in the first period. I'm sure he intended to go back in and play. Now that is a hockey player!
    Unfortunately (though I'm sure his family is happy), the incident ended Peverly's season and, perhaps, his hockey-playing career. But he still travels with the team and no doubt is a great help to them.
    Certainly there are people of courage, dedication and determination in every sport (and more in every other walk of life), but this boils it down for me.  This is why I love hockey.
    Rich Peverley, Dallas Star.

P. S.  The Stars-Blue Jackets game that night was cancelled and replayed a month later.  The Stars ended up losing that one, but they are in the playoffs.  It's the most wonderful time of the year . . .

Which sport is your favorite?  Or do you prefer anything other than sports? Why?

DeAnna Julie Dodson has always been an avid reader and a lover of storytelling, whether on the page, the screen or the stage. This, along with her keen interest in history and her Christian faith, shows in her tales of love, forgiveness and triumph over adversity. She is the author of In Honor Bound, By Love Redeemed and To Grace Surrendered, a trilogy of medieval romances, as well as Letters in the Attic, The Key in the Attic, The Diary in the Attic and The Legacy in the Attic, contemporary mysteries. Her new series of Drew Farthering Mysteries debuted in the Summer of 2013 with Rules of Murder, to be followed by Death by the Book and Murder at the Mikado in 2014 from Bethany House. A fifth-generation Texan, she makes her home north of Dallas with three spoiled cats

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Resurrection Cookies

Are you looking for a family-activity to help your kids understand the true meaning of Easter? Try these no-flour meringue cookies: they’re simple enough to prepare with young ones, tasty, and have the makings of a meaningful tradition.

Set aside some time the night before Easter, and make sure you have all of the ingredients on hand. You’ll need:

1 cup whole pecans
1 teaspoon vinegar
3 egg whites
a pinch salt
1 cup sugar
a zipper baggie
1 wooden spoon
scotch tape

Preheat oven to 300F. Line cookie sheet with wax paper.

Place pecans in baggie and let children beat them with the wooden spoon to break into small pieces. Explain that after Jesus was arrested, He was beaten by Roman soldiers. (Set aside the baggie.)
Read: John 19:1-3

Let each child smell the vinegar. Put 1 teaspoon vinegar into mixing bowl. Explain that when Jesus was thirsty on the cross He was given vinegar to drink.
Read: John 19:28-30

Add egg whites to vinegar. Eggs represent life. Explain that Jesus gave His life to give us life.
Read: John 10:10-11

Sprinkle a little salt into each child's hand. Let them taste it and brush the rest into the bowl. Explain that this represents the salty tears shed by Jesus' followers, and the bitterness of our own sin.
Read: Luke 23:27

Add 1 cup sugar to the bowl. Explain that the sweetest part of the story is that Jesus died because He loves us. He wants us to know and belong to Him.
Read: Psalm 34:8 and John 3:16

Beat with a mixer on high speed for 12 to 15 minutes until stiff peaks are formed. Explain that the color white represents the purity in God's eyes of those whose sins have been cleansed by Jesus.
Read: Isaiah 1:18 and John 3:1-3

Fold in beaten pecans. Drop cookie batter by teaspoon onto waxed paper-covered cookie sheet. Explain that each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus' body was laid.
Read: Matthew 27:57-60

Put the cookie sheet in the oven, close the door and turn the oven OFF. Give each child a piece of tape and seal the oven door. Explain that Jesus tomb was sealed.
Read: Matthew 27:65-66

Leave the cookies alone and go to bed. Explain that they may feel sad to leave the cookies in the oven overnight. Jesus' followers were in despair when the tomb was sealed.
Read: John 16:20,22

On Easter morning, open the oven and give everyone a cookie. Notice the cracked surface and take a bite. The cookies are hollow! On the first Easter Jesus' followers were amazed to find the tomb open and empty.

File:Eastereggs ostereier.jpg
I pray you and your families enjoy a blessed Easter, rich in the fullness of His glory, power, and life!

Susanne Dietze is decorating her house today for Easter. You can learn more about her on her website,