Wednesday, August 3, 2011

30 days of blogging, day 11: Favorite Recipe

Recipes. Yummy! For this one, I'm going to share my favorite summer recipe, because in the summer, I make this at least 2-3 times per week. I often have this for breakfast, I just blend it up and drink it in the car on the way to work.


16 oz Crystal Light peach tea
7 1/2 oz frozen tropical fruit (I use the mix from Costco with strawberries, pineapple, mango and papaya.)
6 oz fat free yogurt
1/4 c Fiber One cereal

Add everything to a blender and blend until smooth, about 1-2 minutes.
Add extra peach tea if needed!

MAKES one giant 32-oz smoothie.


This also works with just the peach tea and frozen fruit. I also like a fruit smoothie with lemonade and frozen mixed berries. It's a great no-guilt summer treat!

Just for fun, I made this into a recipe card (click on the recipe card to grab the full-size image.)

-- Originally posted at:

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

30 days of blogging, day 10: Bible Verse

Like so many things on any "favorites" list, this one seems to change a lot for me. In fact, when I started this project, I included Psalm 23:4 on the list of 15 things about me, because it was important to me at the time. More recently, I've been thinking about this verse a lot, Ephesians 2:10 -

For we are God’s handiwork,
created in Christ Jesus to do good works,
which God prepared in advance for us to do.

I've been doing some reading about spiritual gifts because of my work at church, and this verse is in the curriculum for the class I led a couple weeks ago. What this verse says, I can't truly comprehend. The first part is the easy part: "we are God's handiwork, created... to do good works." It's the second part that is beyond my understanding: "which God prepared in advance for us to do."

Why is this so unbelievable? Because it says that the God of the universe has such a detailed plan that He has prepared in advance specific tasks for His children to accomplish. Sometimes I find it hard to think that God, who surely must have many, many important things demanding his attention, has a plan specifically for me. Me?? Really?? Slowly, He's been teaching me this lesson (or perhaps more accurately, it's been slowly sinking in) - and for that, I am thankful.

-- Originally posted at:

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Costco Generation

Last week, as I was sitting at a Costco food court enjoying berry sundaes with a friend, I remembered this story about Costco from when I was a kid. I tell this story a lot - as I did again last week - and so I decided to share it here. It's kind of interesting how something like a retailer or a restaurant can prompt a strong memory from childhood.

Costco has been around nearly as long as I can remember. They opened a location in Martinez, California (near where I grew up) when I was pretty young. I was maybe 8 or 10, I'm not exactly sure. I remember going there with my parents the day the decided to become members. But the really important memory has everything to do with the famous $1.50 Costco hot dog.

In the 80's, Costco didn't have food courts, but they did have a hot dog cart. What could be better for a price-conscious family than shopping in bulk to save a few bucks AND feeding the whole family dinner for $6? As a kid, I couldn't have cared less that this was a bargain price for dinner. What I cared about was that my hot dog came with a can a soda. Whatever kind I wanted. And I got to have the WHOLE can. This, my friends, was a rare treat. Soda made rare appearances at our house although I remember it regularly showing up on vacation and always being available in Grandma's refrigerator. I know, I know, kids sometimes can't finish a whole can, but seriously, you can't put a price on not having to share when you're a kid.

I'm now a Costco member because when you grow up as a Costco kid, it gets into you. My brother is even more of a Costco addict fan than I am. We tease him sometimes that if Costco doesn't sell it he must not need it. (Don't tell him I said that!) I still stop at the Costco food court now and then, and sometimes I still get a hot dog. How is it possible that something like 25 years later, Costco can still sell a hot dog and soda for $1.50?

-- Originally posted at:

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

30 days of blogging, day 9: What's in my makeup bag

Well, this won't take long! My must-have essentials include lip gloss, chapstick, mascara, eyeliner and bobby pins. Yeah, I know bobby pins aren't makeup, but it's a convenient place to keep a few extras just in case. And I use them more often than just about anything else in there, except maybe the chapstick. :)

-- Originally posted at:

Sunday, May 29, 2011

30 days of blogging, day 8: A place I've traveled to

Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historic Park, January 2007.

This was place I most enjoyed when I visited Hawaii, because it was so peaceful.

-- Originally posted at:

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Little Stinker

Yesterday, I was getting ready for the preschool class I help with at church and I was using a cheese grater to make crayon shavings. (Because it seemed like a good idea at the time, OK?) Charlie was over, and he comes by to see what I'm doing and asks, "Mess? Mess?"

I reply, "Yep, I'm making a mess. No, don't touch the mess. No, no no, don't help with the mess. OK. No. OK. Don't touch the mess. Thanks." And, "Don't tell Oma I'm making a mess."

About 30 seconds later he gets bored of watching me make a mess that he can't help with, runs into the other room, and says "OMA!!! MESS!!!"

Thanks for keeping my secret, peanut.

-- Originally posted at:

Monday, March 28, 2011

For your little princess

I was playing around in Photoshop with a setting that turns a photo into a drawing. I saw a blog post recently that said these make good coloring pages, so I thought I'd give it a try and post the results to share! Click on the image to see and download the full-size version (8 1/2 x 11.)

-- Originally posted at:

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

30 days of blogging, day 7: 10+1 favorite songs

This is my variation of "put your iPod on shuffle and list the first 10 songs that play." Since I already explained that's a recipe for a list of the 10 most embarrassing songs on my iPod, I'm going to do my own picking. Here are 10 (+1) favorite songs in no particular order:

1. A Living Prayer by Alison Krauss
- First of all, Alison's voice is hauntingly beautiful, and I just love this prayer. I never get tired of it.

2. I'm Alright by Phil Vassar
- Pure fun. I love to turn this song up really loud in the car and sing along. Phil wrote this song, but it was first recorded and made a big hit by Jo Dee Messina, and that version is also terrific, it's just not on my iPod.

3. Meet in the Middle by Diamond Rio
- This is the song that got me hooked on country music, nevermind that very little of my world resembles anything having to do with fenceposts or Georgia pines.)

4. Travelin' Soldier by the Dixie Chicks
- I love songs that tell a story, and this one is heartbreaking, and I love the harmonies in the chorus.

5. When You Say Nothing at All by Alison Krauss and Union Station
- Forget the first four songs I mentioned, this should really be at the top of the list. I love this song.

6. Be Unto Your Name composed by Phoebe P. Knapp
- We sing this song at my church, and I like the words and the melody, but it's this one line in the song that touches my heart every time, a prayer to God: "You are the love song we'll sing forever." Amen.

7. The River by Garth Brooks
- Well, if the list has country music on it, how can it leave out Garth? These words are my favorite: "Too many times we stand aside and let the water slip away till what we put off till tomorrow has now become today; so don't you sit upon the shoreline and say you're satisfied; choose to chance the rapids and dare to dance the tide." Oh, to be that brave in life.

8. When Peace Like a River by Horatio Spafford
- This is my most favorite hymn. When I first learned it by heart in college, it was the first verse I liked most about God's peace in times of trouble, but the more times I sing it, it's the later verses that speak of God's taking away my sin and promise of eternity that stir my soul.

9. Remember Me by Mark Schultz with Ginny Owens
- This song was part of the wedding service of some friends of mine something like 10 years ago, and I love it. I love the high harmony sung by the female voice, and I love every bit of the story of this song. This is another song that I never tire of hearing, that I play over and over, and sing along with all my heart.

10. The Dance by Garth Brooks
- This song reminds me that although there have been some things in my life I didn't appreciate at the time - many of which I still don't appreciate - it is experiences that make us who we are. Even as I write this, I have a hard time believing that. This song itself brings back bittersweet memories. "And I, I'm glad I didn't know the way it all would end, the way it all would go; our lives are better left to chance; I could have missed the pain, but I'd have had to miss the dance."

+1. Behold the Lamb (Communion Hymn) by Keith & Kristyn Getty
I originally wrote this post as a list of 10, and this was on the list but it got replaced right at the end. THEN, I went to church on Sunday and we sang not only Be Unto Your Name but also this song. I like so many of the songs by the Gettys and they have become a regular part of the song rotation at our church. I could have picked any number of them, but this one gets listed for the gorgeous, contemplative melody and the rich words.

This is not a "top 10" (or 11) list, just a selection of my favorites. There are so many songs I enjoy time and again that I could go on listing them for a long time. Each is a favorite because of a strong melody, powerful words, or because it stirs a memory. Mostly, it reminds me to spend more time enjoying music in my life, maybe I'll discover a new favorite.

-- Originally posted at:

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

30 days of blogging, day 6: Favorite Movie

On the original list that inspired this project, this subject was plural, but I wouldn't even know where to start a list of movies because I don't see a lot of movies, and I see very few that make a huge impact on me. I had a similar problem when I tried to make a top ten books list, and I could only get to five even though I read a LOT of books! However, last Friday night I had a conversation with some people about favorite movies, and that's an easy one for me. My most favorite movie is When Harry Met Sally.

When this movie was released in 1989 I wasn't old enough to see it, so it wasn't until after college that I was introduced to it by an ex-boyfriend (of all people) who insisted my life wasn't complete without this movie. I will concede he was right on that point, among most others that... well, nevermind.

I've lost count how many times I've watched this movie. Who can forget the funny scene about the wagon wheel coffee table? Or the final scene of the movie when Harry professes his love? The soundtrack recorded by Harry Connick Jr.? Or the deli scene and the famous punchline: "I'll have what she's having."???? I think Harry's assertion at the beginning of the movie that "men and women can't be friends" is probably one that people still debate today, some agreeing, some not.

Anybody want to chime in on that one? I'll start: I think Harry was right.

-- Originally posted at:

Monday, March 21, 2011

Photography Project #3: Covenant

This is another installment of the photos I've been taking for my photography class. This was due a few weeks ago, but we just talked about it last Monday. The word of the week was Covenant, and our assignment was to take a photo of anything that represented a contract, covenant or agreement. When I was explaining my assignment to a couple of friends, they immediately volunteered to be subjects of my photo of the week. While this photo isn't the ideal shot I pictured, I had a very limited amount of time to set it up, and I was happy with the outcome. I did run some actions on the photo, and turned the background to black and white but kept the hands in color.

Thanks for helping out with my project, Andrea & Luis!

-- Originally posted at:

Saturday, March 19, 2011

30 days of blogging, day 5: A picture of something that makes me happy

I've been posting over at my scrap blog some of photos I've been taking and what I'm learning about photography. This photo will post over there in a couple of days with lots of geeky photography details, but it fits today's category for the 30 days project: something that makes me happy.

Disneyland promotes itself as the happiest place on earth and the California Screamin' roller coaster definitely makes it a happy place for me - it's my very favorite ride in the entire resort! I can't help but smile and giggle when I get to ride it.

-- Originally posted at:

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Photography Project #2: Brokenness

This photo assignment was week #2 (photos due 2/21.) The week's sermon was about sin entering the world. We had a great conversation that night about temptations and sin. The assignment this week was one of three things: A macro shot, a close-up shot, or a shot where the subject was framed by something else. At first, I set out to snap some photos of weeds, and I got one that was OK. Then, our family was out to breakfast and I snapped this shot just because it was there. I showed it my my friend Sarah, she knew the theme was brokenness, and this was what she thought the photo said: "it tells me of the struggle most of us have to be disciplined about what we eat. There is such irony that most of the things in this world that taste good aren't good for us at all, while healthy food tastes so, well, healthy." I couldn't have said it better myself!


For the record: it was very, very good.

-- Originally posted at:

Photography Project #1: Creation

Through my church, I joined a photography class/Bible study that meets once a week for 12 weeks, hosted by my friend Kristin. Kristin's photographs are spectacular, so this was a great opportunity to get some tips from a pro. :) Anyway, each week we are discussing that week's sermon and are getting photography assignments that are related. The Week #1 assignment (due February 14, so I'm a little behind on posting) was Creation, and I thought it would be fun to share the view through my lens.

My subject was this lovely California Poppy. Poppies don't bloom every year, so I consider it a special treat when they pop up, and they had just started showing up the week this was taken. Here's my photo straight out of the camera:

Then I tinkered with it, boosting the color and adding a filter to just the background, which distorted it somewhat. I had hoped my original would have more blurriness, but I need to work on my technique a bit (either that or I'm going to need a different lens.)

Last, but not least, I make a scrapbook page. I probably wouldn't have for this photo, but this scrapbook kit called "Where Poppies Bloom" came out the same weekend that I shot this photo, so it seemed like it was meant to be. :)

-- Originally posted at:

Saturday, February 19, 2011

30 days of blogging, day 4: Nicknames

For the record: I did say this wasn't going to be a consecutive 30 days, and seeing as it's been 2 1/2 weeks, I'm way overdue, even taking into account that I expected this to be a slower pace! Oh well. Today's another fun one, nicknames. Since I'm doing these out of order, I'm pretty much doing what sounds good at the moment, which means there is a growing possibility that there will come a point that I'm going to be left with more than a few from the original list that I just don't want to bother with. Because you know that when you put the iPod on shuffle with the intent of listing the first 10 songs that play, you are guaranteed to get a list of the 10 most embarrassing songs ON your iPod. (I'm a Disney fan, so just drop it, OK? You are Part of My World on a voluntary basis.)

So on to the real story for today... my birth certificate says Rebecca, but immediately after committing those 7 letters to the permanent record of my name, my parents started calling me Becky. I went by that until the 5th grade when I changed schools and decided to go by Rebecca. Of course, no one who'd known me since birth could make the switch, so in 9th grade I switched back, only decided it would be "fun" to change the spelling of my name, and I became Bekki. That lasted an even shorter amount of time, and by 11th grade I was back to Rebecca permanently. In other words, I totally deserve it that a couple of my cousins call me "ReBekky," but they are now old enough for me to legally bribe them with beer, and haven't been bugging me with that too much lately.

--- pet peeve ---

          Conversations that go like this:

          Me:                    Hi, My name is Rebecca.

          Other person:     Hi, Rebecca. Do people call you Becky?

          Me (politely):     No, I prefer Rebecca

          Me (in my head): Never. Because if I wanted people to call me that,
                                     I would have started this exchange with, 
                                    "Hi, My name is Becky." SERIOUSLY???!!?

          (Does this happen to other people whose names have common nicknames? Drives me bananas!!!!)

--- / end peeve ---

Besides that, I'm sooooooo not a Becky. Really. A few people have a waiver on this one and call me Becky, but they are generally related by blood, or married to someone who is, or otherwise considered to be "practically family.") Ok, so how about a nickname I actually use, and like?

My friends call me Rebo. Not Reba. Rebo. The story behind this one is unusual. My last year of college, I was roommates with four women I'd never really met before we became roommates. Two of them were named Sarah. One of the Sarahs had a boyfriend (who is now her husband,) who decided it would be easier for him to refer to "his" Sarah by a nickname to save himself the kind of phone calls that start with "Hi, is Sarah there?" "Which Sarah?"

He also decided, that since he was a HUGE (really huge; caps are still an understatement here) Star Wars fan, he would give her a 'Star Wars nickname.' Somehow, it was a very short jump until ALL of the roommates had Star Wars nicknames, and mine is "Rebo," short for Max Rebo, who is the alien that kind of looks like a blue elephant that plays the piano in the bar in Return of the Jedi. (I told you it was unusual!) Rebo was an easy Star Wars match, since it was so close to my real name, and believe me when I tell you that some of the other Star Wars nicknames I didn't consider to be quite so desirable.

So anyway, I didn't need a nickname that year, being the only Rebecca at that particular phone number, but it stuck, and it stuck hard. (Unlike my other college nickname, "Webe," which I only hear very rarely these days from a small list of former roommates, but one of these even converted to Rebo.) My friends from that last year of college still call me Rebo, and probably because that was a wonderful year for me, and because those are some of my dearest friends to this day... I love this nickname. Besides that, one of those friends has kids who call me "Auntie Rebo" and that's how my nephew now knows me, too.

So that's the story behind my favorite nickname... and all the unfavorites that came before it.

-- Originally posted at:

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

30 days of blogging, day 3: Favorite TV Shows

30 days has already, as of today, become 29 days, as I've found one thing on the original suggestion list I won't be blogging about. I'll have to try and think of something to replace it to return to the full 30-day count. Also with today, I'm seeing there are several posts that are going to require I go out and take a photo, including what should be Day #6, a photo of something that makes you happy. It will show up eventually, but probably not as #6. Today, I'm making Day 11 the new Day 3.

Day 3: Favorite TV Shows

So a few years ago, one of my friends who is one of those people who are considered "early adopters" of all things techy (particularly if they are from Apple, but that's a side note,) got TiVo. She said, with all sincerity, "TiVo changed my life!" I laughed. Now, that I get to experience DVR, I have to say, I totally get it. Sara, you were right!

But this is about what I watch, not how I watch. Well, kind of. Because really HOW I watch TV influences WHAT I watch. For example, I don't have to pick between The Good Wife and Parenthood, I get to watch them both every week, AND without commercials. Any show with a theme song as great as Parenthood's must be watched. Sometimes, I rewind the theme song to hear it again.

On Sundays, I watch The Amazing Race, Desperate Housewives (guilty pleasure) and Brothers and Sisters. I don't watch a ton of reality TV, although I was rather fascinated by America's Got Talent last summer, and I try not to miss Top Chef. Honeslty, I would NEVER watch AGT if it weren't for DVR. That show was 2-3 hours per week, and had way too much dead time in it. Lots of skipping ahead on that one, and not just the commercials. The Amazing Race is my favorite, though. I can't imagine how fun that would be to race around the world, although I'm really not into eating icky things and sleep deprivation would definitely impair my game.

I'm starting to realize I watch too much TV as I write this list, although to be fair, I'm often in front of the TV with my laptop, checking emails or catching up on whatever while "listening." That is more likely to be true in front of shows like The Middle, Modern Family, The Office and 30 Rock.

Things I don't watch... American Idol. Glee. CSI-Law&Order-NCIS-etc-etc-etc. Seriously. I am so over crime TV. Awards shows. Sports, not even the Olympics much like I did when I was a kid. Outsourced (regrettably.) Survivor, Biggest Loser, The Bachelor (no regrets on any of those.)

Allright, so don't leave me hanging here now that I've confessed all the things I watch. What do YOU watch?

-- Originally posted at:

Saturday, January 29, 2011

30 days of blogging, day 2: Blog Name

Day 2 is an easy assignment for me: Meaning behind the name of your blog.

The name of my blog is meant to be simply descriptive, so the story here is only about how I decided on this name, which is a pretty short story! When some of my friends started blogging, I thought it might be fun. At first I thought I'd want to blog about the books I read, but the more I thought about it, I realized that I might want to write about different things, and not limit myself to books. In other words, the blog was going to be about miscellaneous things, and it wasn't long until I decided on RebeCCa's MisCellaNies.



a miscellaneous collection or
group of various or
somewhat unrelated items

(Thanks to, my go-to website when I need a dictionary!)
-- Originally posted at:

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

30 days of blogging, day 1: 15 things

I know, right? 30 days of blogging? If I actually do that, I think I might have posted more in 2011 than I did in 2010 ALL YEAR. (OK, not quite. I just checked.) One of the digi scrap designers is doing this on her blog, so I thought I'd give it a try. I'm not going to do 30 consecutive days, though, but rather use these as prompts to just write something a few times a week.

Day 1 - Post a recent photo and 15 things about me.

1. This photo was taken in December 2010, so it qualifies as recent. But I had my hair cut on Monday.

2. You can't see the totally awesome necklace I'm wearing, but I assure you: It's awesome. I wear it almost daily. (Vintage Silver Charms Necklace from The Vintage Pearl, with the letter "R" of course!)

3. This verse is important to me today: "Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me." - Psalm 23:4

4. I heart Starbucks. I know, I know. But their coffee really is very, very good.

5. Yesterday, the weather here (near San Diego) was outrageously gorgeous. Like around 75 degrees. I met a friend for coffee and we sat in the sun for 2 hours catching up. It was awesome. My sincere condolences to those of you reading this in the midst of a very cold and snowy winter. Having spent 10 winters in the frozen tundra of West Michigan, I sympathize with you; but not enough to move back.

6. I like Disneyland. A lot. I have an annual pass and I'm not afraid to use it. Ticker

7. In my free time, I like to take pictures and scrapbook digitally and tinker a bit with design.

8. Things I never thought I'd do: work at a church. But I love it. Probably the best job I've ever had. I've been known to say that the only thing that would make my job better is if there was a Starbucks on the way (see #4.)

9. The last book I read was The Help by Kathryn Stockett. This book is highly recommended, and it's so good that I really should get back to blogging about the books I read. I'm in a book group with other women at church and we read two books a month. I love it because I read lots of things I would never have picked up otherwise.

10. Hello, my name is Rebecca, and I'm addicted to travel. Where should I go next? Suggestions welcome. Invitations to crash at your place would be great. If you live in a foreign country, even better; my passport needs some exercise.

11. For that matter, I could use some exercise. But we'll talk about that later.

12. I have a ridiculously big extended family. I didn't know this was unusual until I became an adult. I thought everyone had 9 aunts and uncles and 15 first cousins. My first cousins now have a total of 13+ kids of their own. These numbers do not include spouses, by the way.

13. I have a thing for Gino's East pizza from Chicago. It's the best.

14. I have a smartphone, but it isn't very smart. Maybe one day I'll be one of the cool kids and have an Android or iPhone.

15. I like sunsets and long romantic walks on the beach. Oh wait, that's a different list.

-- Originally posted at:

Monday, January 17, 2011


So, the little guy, my nephew Charlie, has started consistently referring to me by the same name. Around him, the family refers to me as "Auntie Rebo," a name first bestowed on me by my friend Sarah when her son Aaron was born. Charlie's 2-year-old interpretation of Auntie Rebo? "Babo."

(My mom keeps mistakenly saying "Bobo," which I keep reminding her isn't quite the same. (Link to Wikipedia for just one of many articles about "Bobo.")

I haven't quite figured out yet if he uses this because he can't say "R" yet, or if it's just his preference. Actually, I don't care much because it's pretty cute that he has a name just for me. One more reason to spoil him rotten.

-- Originally posted at: