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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Cookie Dough Fudge

 

I got the original recipe for this online, but it had way too much sweetening in it.  It was very sweet as I made it, so for our family it would have been pretty much inedible with extra sugar!  I so often change recipes anyway, so I made some other changes as well, and then renamed it since it seemed more like candy to us, than “cookie bars”.
Enjoy!  :-)

Layer One

Mix together well in medium mixing bowl:

1/2 C. butter
2 tsp. vanilla
1 (14 oz.) can sweetened condensed milk
1/4 tsp. molasses
1/2 C. shredded coconut
1 C. all-purpose flour
1 C. oat flour (you may use another preferred flour here)

Mix in:

1 C. chocolate chips
1/2 C. chopped peanuts (optional)

Spread in a 11x7x2 cake pan fully lined with waxed paper.  (It may not completely fill the pan.)

Layer Two

Melt together in a sauce pan over medium heat, stirring well:

1 C. chocolate chips
1/2 C. peanut butter
1/4 C. coconut oil

Spread evenly over dough.  Refrigerate at least 3 hours before serving.  Cut into smallish squares.  Do not remove from the fridge till ready to serve or the fudge may become soft.

Freezes well.

I did not put in the chopped peanuts on my first go of this, but I think it will be a good addition, so I’m adding it. :-)

For this, I really do recommend fully lining the pan.  I think it would have been nearly impossible to remove it intact without the waxed paper.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

This Wasn’t What I Signed Up For



(Vintage photo from my grandparents’ real life experience in East Africa!)

It’s a funny thing.  Every once in awhile when we aren’t looking or thinking too much about it, life runs over us with a steam roller.  Maybe that never happened to you.  If not, I’ll have to guess you’re below the age of about five.  The reality of school makes a good start on this line of action for a lot of people.  Yeah.  No joke.

It’s been rather busy this year in one way and another.  This is in addition to the usual round of life – sickness, projects, extra work hours for my husband, friends, church, etc.  We had a wonderful visit with my in-laws in January.  February and March held some drama of an undesirable nature.  In early March my mom also had surgery again.  (She has been recovering in an amazing way this time around.  God has blessed so wonderfully in that!)  April has now produced a large project to transpire in early May – something along the lines of a fair amount of preparation here now; followed by a longish, hectic trip back East to help family out with a big project. 

What do you do when you had a lot of things that just “needed” to get done, and the Lord steps in and says, “No, forget all that stuff.  Here do this now instead.”?  Well, if you’re smart and value your own hide at all, you do what He says.  But, that doesn’t mean that you don’t feel overwhelmed about it if it’s a big change and a lot of work!

I suppose that some people might think that feeling “overwhelmed” shows a lack of faith and even that it is sin.  If so, we’re in good company because it is mentioned no less than eight times in the Psalms.

King David wrote this -

Psalms 142:1-3  I cried unto the LORD with my voice; with my voice unto the LORD did I make my supplication.  I poured out my complaint before him; I shewed before him my trouble. When my spirit was overwhelmed within me, then thou knewest my path…

Isn’t that beautiful?  What comforting words - When my spirit was overwhelmed within me, then thou knewest my path… What a wonderful thought.  He kneweth the way that I take, as Job said (Job 23:10). 

And, please notice that David said he poured out his complaint before the Lord.  This isn’t the only time he mentions that either.  For some reason that I’m at a loss to explain well, the Lord is fine with us letting Him know our complaints.  Granted, I Know He doesn’t want to hear us complaining constantly and over every little thing, but there are times when life really is “too much”.  It’s a blessing to be able to talk with the Lord about these things.  For one thing, He can do something about it – either help us with the trouble we’re having, or change our attitude. That last part isn’t what we’re usually looking for, is it?  But, so often it seems like that’s the one He starts with – changing our attitudes.

It’s easy to glibly quote Romans 8:28 to ourselves or others and pretend that makes everything all right, when it really doesn’t.  Rom. 8:28 doesn’t make the hard things go away, nor does it guarantee that we’ll feel less overwhelmed.  It does mean that all things will eventually, in one way or another, work together for good to them that love God”.  That means we may not get the results that we want, but good will come that will help the Lord’s people, including us, in some way at some time.

Life is hard sometimes.  My little trials are not really that great compared to what some of my brothers and sisters in Christ are going through – persecution, hunger, homelessness, death of loved ones, serious illness, etc.  But, that doesn’t mean that my trials aren’t real to me in my own situation.  Sometimes people have the tendency to down-play other’s trials.  It’s as much as implied, or even said outright, that if you aren’t dying for your faith at this moment, then you should shut up and put up with it.  I don’t think that’s a right way to deal with others, or ourselves. 

I have heard it said that suffering from illness isn’t “suffering for the Lord”.  I hate to hear people say things like that, because I know the Lord sometimes takes us at our word and will put us through some things to make us reconsider what we said or think.  I’ve been there and I don’t wish it on other Christians because it is not pleasant. 

The reason I don’t agree with the idea that suffering “ordinary” illness is not suffering for the Lord is because of John 9:1-3:  And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth. And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.

The Lord makes it clear that God allows illness sometimes for His glory, so that His works can be manifest in the sufferer.  Sometimes there is healing, but other times He is glorified by the outpouring of His grace through their tribulations.  This can be true of other things besides illness.  It might be true of many types of suffering, in fact.

Now look at this:  Romans 8:16-18  The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

Some passages refer to suffering in persecution, but I’d like to point out that this one does not specify what the suffering is.  In fact, some of the sweetest and most helpful writing has flowed out of the lives of those Christians who suffered greatly due to illness and non-persecution related trials.  Annie Johnson Flint is one of those who bore fruit through illness and the loss of all her family.  The poet Martha Snell Nicholson was bed-ridden for years.  Fanny Crosby, the great hymn writer, was blind and had other life tirals.  They remind me of this – Romans 5:3-5  And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.

Being overwhelmed with life, suffering, troubles and trials – all these things can be used to the glory of God and the good of the saints as His love is shed abroad in our hearts.  Life is rough sometimes, but it can lead to great victory or praise of the Lord as He leads us through those things and brings us closer to Himself.  It should anyway, and we should strive to keep this in mind during such times.

Psalms 138:7-8  Though I walk in the midst of trouble, thou wilt revive me: thou shalt stretch forth thine hand against the wrath of mine enemies, and thy right hand shall save me. The LORD will perfect that which concerneth me: thy mercy, O LORD, endureth for ever: forsake not the works of thine own hands.

2 Corinthians 4:7-10  But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;  Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Evening Song – Near to the Heart of God


Berry Fun Saturday – Knitting Projects

 

Here are two links for strawberry knitting projects for this Saturday’s dose of berry fun stuff.  I’m not a knitter, but for my readers who may be, these look like really cute ideas.

First, you can make these little strawberries which can be used for decorating all kind of things. 

Next, maybe you’d like to make a strawberry tea cozy for yourself or a friend!  It’s very cute and will keep your tea pot quite warm. :-)

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

A Random April List

 

Source unknown
I love this picture.  You will probably see it again.

Lately I have been…

Making : plans for a trip at an uncertain date in the nearish future.
 
Cooking : leftovers – woohoo!  It’s great to have leftovers for a busy week!

Reading: Wells Brothers: Young Cattle Kings by Andy Adams.  Not sure if I like it or not, but it’s quite informative regarding early ranching.

Wanting: to get some things done this week so I don’t have to think about them again.

Looking: forward to getting “the project” done. :-)

Playing: Words with Friends.

Learning: HTLM

Deciding: how to rearrange a storage and utility room so that the shelves in there can be better utilized.

Wishing: that I felt a little better than I do at the present time.

Enjoying: time with my husband.

Waiting: for the dryer to get done.  Since it tends to overheat sometimes, I have to run it in short segments often to get a load done.  But, it still works, so hey…

Liking: to rearrange some of our décor.

Wondering: how the project we’re taking on will turn out.

Loving: getting pretty good sleep at night.

Pondering: how the practices of “Biblical Patriarchy” redefine their beliefs in comparison with what they claim to believe.  Something we should consider for ourselves as well.

Watching: some documentaries, sewing and baking videos and things relating to “patriarchy”.

Hoping: that our upcoming trip will turn out well. 

Marveling: at the abundance of wildflowers this year!  It has been truly amazing to see God’s art work.

Needing: to let God work things out.

Smelling: wildflowers and fresh spring smells.

Considering: getting rid of more things and scaling back some of my hobbies.

Wearing: work clothes as I try to get various messier jobs done.

Noticing: that it’s harder to write email than most other things. :-/

Knowing: that something good will come from the present challenges.

Thinking: about reducing the amount of décor in our house so that it takes less cleaning time and I have more time for more important or interesting things.

Feeling: a bit overwhelmed.

Admiring: the colors of the wildflowers.

Buying: stuff to help me deal with some physical struggles.

Laughing: at our silly cat. :-)

Bookmarking: things for potential blog posts.

Bluebonnets.

Sleeping in a kindling box.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

The Way of the Cross – A Poem by Annie Johnson Flint

 


Artist unknown.

The Way of the Cross

Some of us stay at the Cross,
Some of us wait at the tomb,
Quickened and raised with Christ
Yet lingering still in the gloom.

Some of us bide at the Passover Feast
With Pentecost all unknown:
The triumphs of grace in the heavenly place
That our Lord has made our own.

If Christ who had died had stopped at the Cross,
His work had been incomplete.
If Christ who was buried had stayed in the tomb,
He had only known defeat.

But the Way of the Cross never stops at the Cross,
And the way of the tomb leads on
To victorious Grace in the heavenly place,
Where the Risen Lord has gone.

Annie Johnson Flint

Hebrews 6:1-3 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,  Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.  And this will we do, if God permit.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Thousand Word Project – Bleeding Heart

 

Isaiah 53:5  But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Satisfied -- A Poem


I published this poem on here a couple years ago, but I wanted to bring it forward for today.  We believe that Christ died on Wednesday.


Isaiah 53:11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.


Wrath, of all the wraths most fierce,
Most dreadful and most strong;
God did not spare the smallest drop,
But poured it on His Son!

Judgment, just and well deserved,
Holy beyond compare;
Was turned to mercy at the cross,
For all who seek it there.

Righteousness that could not let,
The least of sinners in;
Was satisfied by God's own blood,
Which covers every sin.

Grace, mercy and redemption
Have met our Lord's demands;
Heaven's door to us is open wide,
And there our Surety stands.

The mercy seat is overspread
With Christ's eternal blood,
God looked upon His finished work,
And saw that it was good!

by Mary Stephens (formerly Van Nattan)

Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Christ of Calvary – A Poem by Annie Johnson Flint

 

So often when I’m at a lack of what to post, or when I want something particularly special I fall back on my dear friend Annie.  Her poems speak to me over and over without fail.

Colossians 1:20-22  And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.  And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled  In the body of his flesh through death…

The Christ of Calvary

Christ does not save men by His life,
Though that was holy, sinless, pure;
Nor even by His tender love,
Though that forever shall endure.

He does not save them by His throne,
Though it shall never pass away;
Nor by His vast creative power
That holds the elements in sway…

Continue Reading.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Evening Song – When I Survey the Wondrous Cross

 

Colossians 3:16  Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

I’ve been thinking that on some Saturdays at least it might be nice to end the day with a psalm, hymn or spiritual song as we in the Americas prepare for the Lord’s Day.  This will fall at other times for our international readers in other zones, but I trust it will still be a blessing.  It just seems like a good way to start focusing on the Lord’s Day.  Since I am also making some effort at this time to focus on the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus, tonight’s song is “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross”.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Australian Memories – Jacaranda

 

Psalms 104:24  O LORD, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches.

I was so happy the jacaranda trees bloomed when we were in Australia since they are a favorite of my mother’s from her childhood growing up in East Africa.  They are gorgeous.  Imagine a whole street lined with these beauties!  (Examples in Pretoria and Johannesburg.)

Photos taken at the Brisbane Botanic Gardens Mt. Coot-tha.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Thoughts On the New ‘Noah’ Movie

Psalms 119:53  Horror hath taken hold upon me because of the wicked that forsake thy law.

Noah is the least biblical biblical film ever made.”  - Darren Aronofsky, producer of Noah.

There has been a lot said and written about the new Noah movie.  Astonishingly, and yet not, there are those in the professing Christian community that are approving or excusing this film.

Since other people have already written some useful observations about the film, I’m not going to write my own discussion of the film itself.  Here are some links with a few comments and quotes for your consideration. 

[Disclaimer on all versions other than the Authorized KJV, and some content.]

Ken Ham: The Unbiblical Noah Is a Fable of a Film 

Best quote:

“Ultimately, there is barely a hint of biblical fidelity in this film. It is an unbiblical, pagan film from its start. It opens, ‘In the beginning there was nothing.’ The Bible opens, ‘In the beginning God.’ That difference helps sum up the problem I have with the film. The Bible is about the true God of creation; the movie does not present the true God of the Bible.”

Good point:

“It is hard to fathom why some Christian leaders have recommended this movie. Some of them argue that it can be used for evangelistic purposes. However, it grossly distorts the Genesis account of the creation and the flood and totally denigrates the godly character of the Noah of the Bible. In good conscience, we can’t encourage this strategy of evangelism.”

My thought – You don’t need to see this vile film in order to “discuss it knowledgably with those who have seen it.”  You do need to be completely familiar with the true account of Noah as found in Scripture, and you need to be able to discuss why the true account exemplifies our salvation in Christ.  (See Genesis 5:29 - chapter 9 and 1 Peter 3 and
2 Peter 2.) 

 

I’m a Christian and I think ‘Noah’ deserves a four star review

Don’t let the title fool you.  The conclusion isn’t how it sounds. :-)  This article is a little rough and the author is a Roman Catholic (meaning he’s not truly a “Christian” unless he believes by faith without the works required by Catholic tradition), but he gives us a pretty clear outline of the film’s content which is very informative.  If you want to know what is in the film, read this.  (Definite disclaimers here on the source, some content, and his remarks about The Passion of the Christ.)

Best quote:

“It’s true that it might be a bit difficult to discern the ‘message’ in a film so filled with explosions (the Bad Guys have bazookas, naturally), monsters, and infanticide, but any supposed Christian ‘leader’ ought to try a little harder. Pay a little closer attention. If you do, you’ll see a tale that entirely perverts the nature of God, while flipping sin and immorality on its head.

“Aside from a brief glimpse of something that appeared to be either rape or cannibalism, wickedness is portrayed as mostly a matter of eating meat and mining the earth for resources. Noah — a righteous man in the Bible — is stripped of his righteousness in favor of obsessiveness. God is stripped of any characteristics at all, apart from vindictiveness.”

My thought – Sometimes the truth needs to be said, folks.  Anyone who would watch this movie and then get offended at blunt writing like this, well…I have no words.

Isaiah 5:20-21  Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!  Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight!

Romans 1:22-25  Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man…Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the truth of God into a lie

Noah and Other Biblical Adaptations – by my friend Jo Louise.

Best quote:

“I do not like or have any interest[...] in watching adaptations of the bible. The Word of God is the Truth and should never be altered for entertainment or sheer pleasure. Altering God's words is to say that we think as humans we could have done a better job. That God's words are not good enough for us.”

My thought – This is an excellent point!  Proverbs 30:5-6  Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him.  Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.  There is a tendency these days to handle the word of God lightly and to ignore the fact that words have meaning, and that includes every word in God’s Book.  Revelation 22:18-19  For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book. Reinterpreting scripture through film becomes a perilous thing, and when a self-proclaimed atheist does the job, why would Christians even want to see the results?  That one stymies me.

As my sister-in-law pointed out, this movie is wickedness and the Bible says, …God is angry with the wicked every day.  Psalms 7:11 (That’s probably not one of the verses you’ll hear being quoted by the “Christian leaders” who are justifying this film.)

2 Thessalonians 2:9-12, in speaking of the man of sin tells us,  Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

Do you love the truth?  Do you believe the truth?  Do you have pleasure in unrighteousness?  Please consider carefully.

The right way:

Psalms 119:14-16  I have rejoiced in the way of thy testimonies, as much as in all riches. I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways. I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word.

Psalms 119:128  Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false way.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

The Man on the Middle Cross

 

This poem was written by my friends Theresa, whose story I told in August 2012 shortly after she went Home to Jesus.

Luke 23:33  And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left.

The Man on the Middle Cross

There’s a man who is so dear to me,
He’s known through all eternity,
To save lost souls is why He came,
But many men have shunned His name;
The Man On The Middle Cross

They beat Him beyond human recognition,
Then He carried His cross to that place of contention,
He willingly laid down while praying that we
Would accept His finished work at Calvary;
The Man On The Middle Cross

The nail holes in His hands and feet
Were part of the plan He was to complete,
The crown of thorns upon His head,
And when He was born…only a manger bed;
The Man On The Middle Cross

He died for sinners far and wide,
That’s the reason for His riven side,
Tho’ they reject Him, He loves them still,
If they’ll turn to Him their hearts He’ll fill;
The Man On The Middle Cross

He took my sin and He took my shame,
I will forever praise His name,
When I trusted Him as my Lord and Savior,
He promised He would leave me never;
The Man On The Middle Cross

The greatest thing He could ever do,
Is rise from the dead for me and you,
All this He did without reservation,
Now He’s prepared us a home in that heavenly nation;
The Man On The Middle Cross.

By Theresa Rutherford
2006
Used by permission.

Romans 5:6-9  For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.  For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

In Loving Memory of Uncle Dana

 

Proverbs 10:7  The memory of the just is blessed…

My mom’s uncle, Dana Mathna, went to be with the Lord on January 19th at 92 years of age.  He was born April 2, 1921.  Unbeknownst to me, we shared a birthday, which is why I chose today to post my memorial of him.  He was married to Aunt Helen (my grandfather’s sister) for 67 years and was a member of the Shippensburg First Church of God for 69 years!  Those are amazing numbers in this day and age!  Uncle Dana was on the Church Council and also a custodian for his church for many years.

This is pretty much how I remember Uncle Dana.  We visited in their home several times, but the ones I remember were when I was in my teens.  I don’t remember him from when I was small.  They also paid a  visit later to my Gramma in Michigan and we saw them then as well.

I may not have all the details on these things exactly correct, but here are some things I recall.  (Maybe if any of the family read this they can help me out where I might be off.)

Uncle Dana was a bit of legend in our family.  He was known for the strong, strong coffee he liked.  My dad always said Uncle Dana would have a cup in the morning and then the pot sat on the back of the stove all day and got as thick as mud before he got home from work, at which time he drank some more.  I don’t how he slept, unless it was decaffeinated!  That looks like it could be a cup of that famous coffee at this elbow in this old photo! :-)

Uncle Dana was an only child and he told us that he didn’t want his own children to be as lonely as he was growing up so he thought when he got married he’d have 12 kids.  (An obvious solution to the problem, right?)   Aunt Helen was not that ambitious in the kids department so they compromised for 6, which God did grant them.  Only Randall died as a baby, but despite some serious handicaps he lived some months longer than the doctor expected.  It was attributed to the great love that was showered on him by the whole family (extant at that time).

My mom and her brother were in their wedding, pictured above.  My Gramma was also (right of bride), and possibly my Grandpa (second from left).  Aunt Helen was wearing my Gramma’s wedding dress. :-)

Great-grandma Hoover was already a widow at the time that Uncle Dana and Aunt Helen married.  She lived with them for several years in the old family home and then moved to an inexpensive apartment that their church had for widows. 

Uncle Dana and Aunt Helen with their two oldest kids.

The three youngsters that came along later.  (I don’t know where Randall fit in.)

Uncle Dana loved kids.  I remember him as always being interested in us and what we were doing.  He talked to us like he really cared, and that’s something kids don’t forget.  He was known for handing out candy to kids of all ages at church on Sundays. :-)

Another great story from his life is about his smoking habit.  He smoked for years I guess.  It got so bad that he was smoking a pack a day, if I remember correctly.  At some point he just came to grips with what he was doing to his health and the money he was wasting.  I suppose he was thinking about how he might be shortening his time here on earth with Aunt Helen.  At that point he determined that he was going to stop smoking and set aside that money (a pack a day!) to take his wife on trips, and he did.  They took quite a few bus tours with groups from their church.  I think he also sent Aunt Helen to England and Prince Edward Island (with their daughter) so that she could see those places in which she had a special interest.

Of course, the greatest story of Uncle Dana’s life is that he was born again and loved the Lord – and that he acted upon that love in so many ways throughout his life.  I am sure that many lives have been touched by his kindness and helpfulness.  Whether we live a long or relatively short life, these are the things that count.  Our efforts will always be imperfect, but the question is, will people remember us for our faithfulness in following the Lord and pointing others toward Him?

Hebrews 13:7  Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Allergic Reactions to Fresh Vegetables

 

[NOTE: This information and the suggestions given are not intended to be a diagnosis or cure for any problem.  If you have a serious problem along this line or continual difficulties of this type, please consult your healthcare provider.]

My brother and sister-in-law and I have had some problems with reactions to fresh vegetable recently.  Carrots and celery have been a big trigger for the most part.  All three of us have experienced itching in the mouth, and I’ve had a sensation of having damaged my throat or that it was swelling.  The itching seems to be clearly an allergic reaction, but the other doesn’t seem clear as to whether it’s caused by something in/on the vegetables or if it’s a problem with the roughness of the texture.  (My brother and I both have skin, mouth, and digestive responses from rough textures.)

Today I had a reaction to organic celery (which, due to USDA rules, may not have been truly organic).  I noticed a sensation of itching in my mouth before my throat started to feel like there was a piece stuck in it.  I don’t know if there actually was or not, but it felt like that.

I expect that other people may have had this problem as well if there are three out of six of us on this property who have had problems, so I thought I’d pass on a small tip that might help someone.

Twice now when I’ve had this “swelling throat” sensation where it feels very irritated, I have used this method:  I crushed a half a Benadryl between two spoons, mixed it into some water and then sipped it very slowly, letting my throat get a good exposure to each swallow.  This has helped me both time.  When I did it for the reaction to the carrots some time back it helped a lot.  Today I did it for the celery issue and it helped some.  I could do a second half a Benadryl and probably get more relief, but I don’t really want to spend the afternoon sleeping. :-/  Because of that, I also sprayed my throat with Chloraspetic and sucked an Altoids ginger mint since ginger is an anti-inflammatory.   The thing about the Benadryl is that it can help the throat and it will also help by going into your system the usual way (if it’s an allergic problem).  Also, I expect it works faster since it’s dissolved in liquid.

Foods have been having strange affects on people these days, and this has been a recent problem to us, so I thought I’d pass this on.

As far as the carrots go, my sister-in-law found that if she buys the whole carrots and peels them herself they have less trouble, so it’s probably something that is put on the “baby carrots” to keep them fresh that bothered them.  My issue came from an organic whole carrot that I peeled myself, so that didn’t make a difference for me.  (We have no trouble with these vegetable cooked.)  Even if it was just a texture issue, the Benadryl in water did help, so if you have that issue you might try it.  It’s very unpleasant to feel like your throat is swelling or has been abraded.

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After thought – If you actually do have something stuck in your throat, and you’re not choking (no trouble breathing or even talking) – a bit of lettuce, celery string, tomato skin, etc. – and water won’t dislodge it, try eating a piece of bread or drinking hot water.  A friend of my dad’s got a piece of lettuce stuck in his throat once and the only thing that dislodged it was bread.  Cooked rice might also help.