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carol@inkwellcoaching.com

Schererville, IN

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September 24, 2020

Pumpkins, Apples, and Pears, Oh My

Welcome to fall and an abundance of pumpkins, apples, and pears. These are just a few favorites that enjoy a big debut this time of year. The Great Pu

September 17, 2020

Creating Space…in Your Refrigerator, Freezer, Life

Lately I’ve noticed that I have the need for more space—physically, mentally, digitally, and when it comes to my schedule. And no, I do not want a

September 10, 2020

Standing in the Doorway of September

We’re standing in the doorway of September. Summer days still linger, yet autumn is inching its way into our lives—and wardrobes. It’s one more

September 3, 2020

Sometimes I Eat My Feelings

Yes, you read that correctly. Sometimes I eat my feelings. How about you? We feel sad, so we eat food that soothes us. We feel like celebrating, so we

September 2, 2020

Carob Brownies

(This recipe first appeared in the August 2020 issue of Get Healthy, a publication of The Northwest Indiana Times.) Ingredients:  1/2 cup all-purpos

September 1, 2020

High-fiber, low-fat legume adds the flavor without the drawbacks of chocolate

(The following article first appeared in the August 2020 issue of Get Healthy, a publication of The Northwest Indiana Times.) Online version Most pe

August 27, 2020

Are You Ready?

Are You Ready? Or are you waiting for the perfect time to…                             …learn a new skill? …write the book? …ea

August 25, 2020

Gluten Free Pie Crust

This recipe yields two 9-inch pie crusts. 2 cups Gluten Free All Purpose Flour Blend (Namaste and King Arthur are brands I’ve used)  1/2 teaspo

August 20, 2020

It’s Tomato Time

As I was caring for my tomato plants, I had the memory of my father teaching me about cutting off the suckers–those shoots that show up between

August 13, 2020

Enjoy a Bit of Sabbath Today

Today, take some time to lighten things up a bit and do something you really enjoy—for about an hour. Warning: this may take some discipline. Monks

Where are your Gifts?

Only 13 days until Christmas.  Where are your Gifts?  I do not mean the gifts we look for in stores and in catalogues or on the internet.  Where are the Gifts only YOU were created to give?  In this season of Advent, it is the Gifts only you are able to give that can make a difference in making the world brighter!

Do you know someone who is rather sad these days?  Perhaps you know lots of folks who are simply feeling blue.  Some have lost loved ones and find this time of year particularly difficult.  Others are in the midst of financial struggles and/or loss of a job.  We all have friends who dread spending time with certain family members for various reasons.  Many people are ill and holidays add even more unnecessary stress.  Whatever the reason, is there a way you could share some of your Gifts and make a difference?  Could you reach out and give a part of yourself to share hope, light and a bit of love?

Think about it.  What if you phoned a friend you know could use some hope and spent an hour of your time with them over lunch or a cup of coffee?  Or, what if you gave your favorite cashier at the grocery a small token of appreciation, because she often makes your day a bit brighter?  What if you wrote a note to someone who hasn’t heard from you in a while?  Could you add some light to their busy week?

Often we apply the “all or none” principle.  Let perfection go.  When we all do a little something, we add more hope, light and love to a world that is too often filled with darkness, bitterness and never enough love.

Only 13 days until Christmas.  Quiet yourself from all the shopping, baking, decorating, etc.   Let your unique light shine and fill someone’s heart with hope and love.  May God Bless~

“I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them;  I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth.  These are the things I will do;  I will not forsake them.”   The promise of God,  Isaiah 42:16  NIV

Dancin’…Dancin’…Dancin’ the Night Away

What fun we had the other evening.  We danced!  Not just any dance, but THE BIG DANCE– of the year.  My son attends an all boys’ high school and each year is the Mother & Son Dance, fondly referred to as the “Mom Prom.”  

Now, before you think this whole idea is crazy and wonder what young man between the ages of 14-19 would even attend such an event, let me set the record straight.  Lots of sons dance with their moms and actually have fun.  It is a very refreshing sight to behold.  Young men dressed in suits, ties and the like, out on the town with their moms.  Granted, most freshman struggle with this, but peer pressure can be a good thing.  This dance is a real treat for us moms, and the upperclassmen set the tone.  There were several instances when I heard my son say to a fellow student, “Why aren’t you dancing with your mom?  She does everything for you!”  Wow!  Hopefully this phase of raising my son lasts his lifetime. 

We laughed and danced and laughed some more.  We took lots of pictures and tried to follow the latest “club” dance steps.  (The boys seemed to have it a bit more together here.)   Moms and their sons, having the time of their lives, before college and crazy work schedules…in spite of current day challenges.  It was a bit like a fairytale, and at midnight, the glass slippers were gone.  Hard as we try to hang on to times like these, time marches on and so do our children.  How blessed I am to have had one more dance.

“Discipline your son and he will give you peace;  he will bring delight to your soul.”                                    Proverbs 29:17 NIV  

There’s just something about dinner

I was conversing with some friends yesterday, and it became very clear that some pretty big decisions are made while dining together.  Not just about superficial “how was your day” talk, but meaningful things that have the potential to change lives.  Like:  deciding to make a retreat;  becoming a community volunteer;  or coaching your child’s sports team.  Why is this?  Perhaps it is because we have time to really think as we chew, taste and swallow that bite of baked potato seasoned with real butter and a smidgen of sour cream.  Maybe our brain goes through a similar process to make a decision.  Maybe it’s because we are forced to look into our friend’s eyes and see what is honestly happening in their life as we sit across the table.  Or is it because we have chosen to take the time to just be present to the moment at hand?

Think about the significant things in your life and you’ll see where I’m coming from on this.  When we get together to do just about anything, there is food available.  Example:  business networking usually takes place during the breakfast or lunch hour.  Yes, some of that is because we are all very busy and stressed and we have to multi-task to fit it all into our day.  However, there is just something really comforting about eating while we talk about important stuff. 

I often joke about how it is all about the food.  It is.  Food sustains us.  It is tangible and comforting and hopefully, delicious.  (Healthy will be another “thought” on another day.)  So, the next time a friend invites you to meet for dinner, be careful what you sign up for.  You might find yourself in a situation that you never expected….and it could be a very good thing!

“So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God.”                                                                                  1Cor 10:31 NAB

After the Turkey

We had spent Thanksgiving eating our family favorites….deep fried turkey, real mashed potatoes (with lumps as proof), sweet potato souffle, cranberry jelly (can rings included), and stuffing.  Blessings and abundance and love.  What could be better?

The day after the eating frenzie, we drove south to a state park and met dear friends to hike off the calories.  An unseasonably warm, sunny day added glory to the streams and rocks that glaciers had carved out so many years ago.   Laughter, slipping in the mud, remembering stories we had written….now called our life, and feeling so very thankful for so many reasons.  Some of us felt challenged by the trails marked as “most difficult” but not one of us turned to take the easy trail.  Sure, we joked and thought about it, but when it came to the moment of decisive truth, none of us caved.  We just kept climbing and pushing our way forward, laughing to ease the pain and encourage one another.  Were we crazy?  No need to reply.  This is the trail.  This is life.

In a world of chaos and frenzy that searches for the best deal or cyber-sale, what relief we found…together, after the turkey, on a November day filled with uncharacteristic splendor.  Many other families did the same.  Gratitude.  Abundance.  Friendship.  Another story written, to recall another time. 

“He climbs highest who helps another up”  Zig Ziglar