Saturday, February 28, 2009

Sledin' with the Barker's


I bring you photos from our day spent with our good friends the Barker's. We decided since we have barricaded ourselves in for the winter....maybe we should get out a little more before the snow is all gone.

The night before left a coating of fresh snow....

View from our back deck

Along the drive up the mountain....Harry driving me and Matt the driver for the Barker's. I should have ridden with the Bark's or heavily medicated. Such a windy curvy drive... on one side you have the cliffs and the other... well the edge and drop off of the cliff.

Then once we hit the actual snow and ice....I was praying I had ridden with the Barker's. Oh, I should have mentioned... the Barker's came from Heidelberg, Germany....and can drive in snow. Harry and I are from Florida and hot Atlanta.

Again, we were born and raised in the South. Ginger had for her family.... wool socks, waterproof pants, snow shoes, hats with ear pieces and fuzzy toggle thingy's (we do not even know the names for such attire).

And this is about all we saw of Gavin.....his 10/20 window. Everything else was covered...I wish Ginger had dressed us.

And of course these guys had sleds. And not just any sleds, but one that had a steering wheel and brakes. Even Matt has the fuzzy toggle ear covering hat thingy!

Tristan is either a pro or all 100% dare-devil boy. Once we hit the snowy patch, he went climbing to the top of the hill.

Ginger. She'll be coming down the mountain when she comes... she'll be coming down the mountain when she comes....

Like I said.... this is all we saw of Gavin. Just his eyes. Actually, I am not sure we really had Gavin Barker at all?

Harry's attempt.....

Oh, we are freezing.

My attempt....

My one and only goal: FAST and catch air.....

We had a blast. We came home to a warm bath and a soothing fire.
Blessings to a cold day with warm prospects,

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Head in the books again


Yes, Harry is back in school, but this time the Navy is paying for it! Early this year he began his studies at the Navy War College. Something about a Chaplain at the War College seems a little off... you know the Chaplain non-combatant, cannot carry a weapon thingy.... but he is so excited.

But in stead of the beautiful Navy War College campus in the picturesque Newport, Rhode Island...

...he will study here at our lovely and incredibly untidy, freezing cold, miniscule office study.

Okay, maybe Newport, Rhode Island in the winter may be a little colder, but at least they would have a Target, Wal-Mart, and a mall... not to mention those Outlet Malls on Interstate 95 up towards Boston.



A day for fasting


In the Western Christian calendar, Ash Wednesday is the first day of Lent and occurs forty-six days (forty days not counting Sundays) before Easter.

Ash Wednesday gets its name from the practice of placing ashes on the foreheads of the faithful as a sign of repentance. The ashes used are gathered after the Palm Crosses from the previous year's Palm Sunday are burned. Ashes were used in ancient times, according to the Bible, to express mourning. Dusting oneself with ashes was the penitent's way of expressing sorrow for sins and faults.

In the Roman Catholic Church, Ash Wednesday is observed by fasting, abstinence from meat, and repentance—a day of contemplating one's transgressions.

Our denomination does not observe Ash Wednesday nor participate the in the fasting. Mount Paran, our home church has their annual fast during the months of summer. Harry and I being the devoted observers we are…. decided to observe the fast during the 40 days preceding Easter. (Fasting in the summer is hard… we like Dairy Queen vanilla milk shakes too much)

So several years ago, early on in our marriage we decided to set aside lent as our fasting period. We each decide on the areas of our life we wanted God to move in, people we wanted God to intercede upon, and parts of ourselves we needed an extra anointing on. We thought long and hard about what we wanted to fast and finally decided to give up what we most wanted to NOT give up.

Harry: coffee and bread
Me: fast food, sweets, and carbonated sodas (a.k.a. Diet Mountain Dew).

Needless to say these were things we had everyday and in large quantities.
For those of you who know Harry… you know he drinks a pot of coffee when he wakes up, another pot during the day, and then a few cup or two before he goes to bed. Way too much coffee for one person. And bread…. Harry loves breads and rice and potatoes.

For those of you who know me… I used to drink about 7 diet mountain dew a day, forget to eat all day, then decide to run through the drive-thru for a quick bite…and I love junk food.

Harry and I had no clue what we were doing when we began this fasting business. For the first few days the headaches were unbearable. We were having trouble staying awake and concentration was at an all time low. Physically our bodies were having a hard time adjusting to daily life without all those chemicals.

By the end of the first week we were having trouble cohabitating. We were the most irritable people to be around. I remember at one point wanting to claw his eyes out at one point… and I think he felt the same.

For several weeks we struggled with the lack of our favorite daily intakes…but we soon adjusted. The idea of us without all our normal stimulants became somewhat freeing. The Saturday before Easter we decided to completely fast. All day we went without food or drink, only water. By 6 p.m. we were starving. But I guess that’s the point…. when you are craving something… you focus your attention on prayer and meditation. So that is what we did to sustain ourselves throughout the remainder of the evening.

That night as we lay in bed…around 10:30 we had tossed and turned for about an hour. It is extremely hard to sleep on an empty stomach. But as we lay there we discussed how our fasting had come to an end…. how we were going to our favorite restaurant after tomorrow’s church service….how we are going to order our favorite dishes….how new did not know if we wanted to even go back to the days of caffeine slavery.

By about 11:15 p.m. we had wound ourselves up to the point we were starving. **FYI never talk about food when you are fasting…just not a smart thing to do** We lay there listening to each others hollow stomachs growl. We each look at each other and new exactly what we were about to do….

With trepidation we jumped out of bed, tossed on our clothes and ran out the door. We had decided to go through the Krispy Kreme drive thru, while the HOT sign was still on, put the 2-dozen doughnuts in the back seat and a mega big gulp of fresh coffee in the cup holder. We timed it just so….we would be in the Taco Bell parking lot by 11:55 pm. By the time we paid for our tacos the clock had struck 12:00 and therefore it was officially Easter. AND we dug right in. We had eaten the entire bag of Taco Bell and followed it with the warmest most scrumptious doughnuts I had ever tasted.

Later we crawled into bed….full as stuffed little pigs, and oh so happy. We drifted soundly off to sleep. Yes, that was our first fasting experience.

There have been many others…but never to that extent. Harry has since to give up coffee…and I almost dried up not eating fast food.

This year we have decided to give up….

Harry: starches, sweets
Me: sweets….as far as diet mountain dew, the NEX does not have any….and fast foods…not a problem here on Crete…there are not any!

All silliness aside, it was an amazing to see how God moved in our lives. I think of the lists of things we wanted to spiritually accomplish, the areas we wanted to move and intercede in… God was faithful in every single last one of them. He taught us a lot that first year. And it is an experience I would not trade for all the doughnuts in the entire Krispy Kreme restaurant on Cobb Parkway.

Blessings to those with a full belly,


Tuesday, February 24, 2009

A ginormas sugar cookie

Ya sas,

I wanted to share with you a yummy recipe someone graciously shared with me. This is the largest sugar cookie I have ever made. Also, I doubled the recipe below... for a larger crowd... and some to take home!

It’s a desert pizza. You will need:

1 sugar cookie mix
1 package cream cheese
1 cup sugar
Chocolate syrup

First mix sugar cookie together and spread over large pizza pan.
Bake as directions require for your sugar cookie recipe.
Cool about 20 minutes.

Blend softened cream cheese with sugar.
Spread mixture over cookie.

Slice desired amount of bananas and strawberries to spread on top of cookie.

Drizzle desired amount of chocolate over cookie, but only minutes before serving.

** Recipe better if fresh (not frozen) strawberries and bananas are used.**

I used frozen slimy strawberries and after about 30 minutes the strawberries had mixed with the chocolate. It tasted good, but it looked like the bananas were old instead of covered in yummy chocolate.

Blessings and happy eating,


Monday, February 23, 2009

I am Freezing


It is absolutely freezing here (to me that is)…. There are several here who think the weather is lovely…. so crisp and refreshing. But not me. I was born and raised in the South. North Florida and Atlanta were crisp enough for me.

Harry and I were contemplating about going to the snow capped mountains this weekend, but I may reconsider now. Yesterday, we had icy precip on our door step. For those not familiar with the aviation term… Icy precip means chunks of hail. So no need to go to the mountains when we can freeze ourselves to death right here.

The house is so cold your extremities go numb after a 10 minute exposure. Last night we had a great fire going....until the wind changed direction. Then we had to open a window... so much for the raging fire that was cranking out so much heat! Oh, I miss central heating.

And carpet! When I first saw the house... the first thing I fell in love with was all the marble. It was every I l.o.a.t.h. it. From the first step out of bed in the morning... my little piggies freeze.

But I have a remedy for this ailment.... socks and more socks. Layers of socks. Also, I sport my finest in footwear. My old worn out Uggs.

My new rugby looking slip-ons... with tassels. (available at Target)

And my favorite, but not the warmest.. crocheted Mary Janes.

Gone are the days when I walked around all stylish. These days I am not going for only comfort, but warmth. Do not fret my fellow Atlantians...I still have all my stilettos!

Blessings to those basking in the warmth, (their probably in FL right now)


Sunday, February 22, 2009


Pronunciation: \ˈsvelt, ˈsfelt\
Function: adjective
Inflected Form(s): svelt·er; svelt·est
Etymology:French, from Italian svelto, from past participle of svellere to pluck out, modification of Latin evellere, from e- + vellere to pluck

Date: circa 1817

1 a: slender, lithe b: having clean lines: sleek

2: urbane, suave
— svelte·ly adverb
— svelte·ness noun

This is my new favorite word and my mantra for the blog layout process.

East Coast layout received the most votes! So with the East Coast layout and svelte in mind .... I hope to have a blog makeover soon. Those hearts and clovers are driving me insane. Hopefully, I will have the new one before I add Easter bunnies or eggs to the sides.

I have no idea what gets into me.... it is so unlike me, but I sit down at the computer, browse through layout and just start changing things. I have lost a few things in the process (pictures and a few posts) and gained a few (but hopefully not bunnies and eggs).

I like things organized and with clean lines. I need to get back to my roots.

Blessings to those with a svelte·ly attitude,


Saturday, February 21, 2009

100th Post

Who would have ever thought Harry and I would have enough to say to write 100 posts? Who would have thought anyone wanted to listen?

When we started this blog... we were not really sure what to expect. Not sure what people wanted to hear from us. But it has been an amazing adventure to live in full time ministry and I thank you for your ceaseless prayers and words of encouragement.

We are blessed to have family and friends such as you,


Friday, February 20, 2009

Auntie K loves pictures

Especially of her little rug-rats.

Blessings to those with a picture perfect smile,
Auntie K

Thursday, February 19, 2009

fungi multicellular filaments = hyphae

Hyphae better known as MOLD.

That's what we are experiencing this week at the Hansen household… an epidemic of mold.

Well, maybe not that bad, but it is gross. In humid climates such as Crete, if we do not aerate our house mold will grow. This is kind of a Catch-22... We are freezing so we tighten down the hatches and hunker in for winter….yet we are supposed to leave a window open or cracked to ventilate the space, but if we do then the cold air comes rushing in and we freeze.

“Although molds grow on dead organic matter everywhere in nature, their presence is only visible to the unaided eye when mold colonies grow. A mold colony does not comprise discrete organisms, but an interconnected network of hyphae called a mycelium.”

Because our mold is visible to the human eye…. I think we are breeding a colony of mold. And not all mold is black and red.... we have the white and yellow kind too. Kind of like a floral colony of mold. A mold arrangment.

This kind of mold grows underneath the paint. When the "colony" gets too flakes the paint off. This is happening several places around our doors and windows.

“Molds are ubiquitous in nature, and mold spores are a common component of household and workplace dust. However, when mold spores are present in large quantities, they can present a health hazard to humans, potentially causing allergic reactions and respiratory problems.”

This is the reason I called the housing department to report our colonization of mold. Well that and a small list of other items…. About 6. I have never complained to the housing department… in the year we have been here… not once I have even whispered a complaint. Yesterday, I go in with my small, yet growing list.

1. Bathroom light bulb needed changing.
~Yes I know how to change a bulb….but not this bulb. It has melted to the plastic fixture and will need someone to rip it out… I am not sure how to do it without shattering the bulb.

2. Chimney flue will not close.
~And birds have been flying into the house…sending the animals literally in a tail spin.

3. Electrical socket does not work.
~Landlords solution: use another socket.

4. Tub will not drain.
~I have poured “stuff” down the drain, but to no avail. Landlord says, “It’s probably hair.” Well duh, and now we know what it is can we get rid of it!

5. Bedroom heater not working.
~I NEED MY HEAT! Landlord’s response, “Probably needs batteries.” Well why did I not think of that? Surely that was the 1st thing I thought of… I think he thinks I am an idiot. (that’s when I called Harry to come home and deal with the landlord... I think he hates me too)

But before Harry made it home….. I show the landlord the mold.

6. Mold colonies forming in my house.
~Landlord says, “Yeah, open the window.” I look at him and try not to appear annoyed, “How do we get rid of it?” To which he replies, “No it’s okay!”

I am going to ask him for his email so I can send him the article I found about mold.

“Some molds also produce mycotoxins that can pose serious health risks to humans and animals. Exposure to high levels of mycotoxins can lead to neurological problems and in some cases death. Prolonged exposure, e.g. daily workplace exposure, can be particularly harmful.”

Oh, the winter days of Souda Bay.

Blessings to those in a healthy environment,


Monday, February 16, 2009

My rebuttal

Yeah... Harry's first post.

We started this blog, key words...WE in hopes of keeping you informed of our lives and ministry. So far, it has only been me.

But I have a few rebuttals.... and for those of you who know us... this is perfectly normal.

1st: Harry did not spend a fortune on Valentine's Day this year nor any other year ...than maybe our first year together.... and I am still waiting for a real Christmas present... and birthday too now that I think about it!

2nd: I went to the guys house to see if they had electricty....or if it was just out at our place! I know how to flip a breaker!

3rd: The possum was real! there was only way out of our place and it was up a flight of stairs. This bugger was like 2 feet tall and would not go back up the stairs. I stomped me feet at him... yelled... everything but run charging after him. Again it was a giant rat like creature! I am from the South... we have these 'round our parts, but dead beside the road.... not live and in your stairwell. I ran next door to see if the "guys" could... I don't know shoot it or run it over! Anything, I was late for work.... had a roll bag, back pack, carry-on and in 3 inch heels.

4th: I had to beat on the guys I think the beating noise scared off the vermin... he was really there!

5th: We did not date a lot of people. Harry maybe, but not me!

6th: Harry just likes to "rescue" me!

Blessings to those in need of rescue,


My only Valentine's card


Today is my mother's BIRTHDAY!! She is not 50 yet, but she is another year closer! We called her just as our day was ending and hers was beginning (the 8 hour time difference). Harry, Kayne and I will miss the cookout and birthday cake. But fortunate for us.... we can blame the late birthday card and gift on the mail service. "Momma is in the mail!"

Also I wanted to share my only Valentine's card this year. That's right... not one from my loving husband, but from my niece and nephew.

When I called Kadence to thank her for the pictures and card she replied, "I did not write it... my momma did, I just put the stickers on." I love how kids just say whatever is on their mind!

I also received pictures of my parents with the grandbabies just before heading off to church.



Saturday, February 14, 2009

When Harry Met Kristie

It is hard to imagine Valentines Day is upon us again. It really seems as though it just was last month. Yes another holiday that is going to cost me a fortune. I make light of that but I treasure everyday that I spend with Kristie. It is hard to imagine her not part of my life.

Now you are probably wondering how it all started. Well it all began 11 years ago in Atlanta at the Comfort Suites and Inn. It was the first week of Feburary 1998 and I was begining my airline career. I clearly remember eating breakfeast and watching Kristie enter the room with amazement. Then my buddy Todd introduced us and she was gone with a flash. Little did I know what was ahead.

Then about two months later on the 8th of April our relationship began in earnst. I recall vividly trying to sleep after a long night of training when a knock came on the door. Then there was beating on my window. So I got up and there she is again. My friends had told me that several flight attendants were living next door but this was to good to be true! It was her. Even better because she needed my help. She informed me that the power was out in her kitchen (if you believe that). So I went to her rescue but what she did not know was that I was the worst guy to help her. I magically went to the electric box and reset the breaker and became a instant hero. Then the following night there was a mysterious animal on the stairs. I recieved a knock on the door and a pitful look. "Hary can please get rid of the possum so I can go to work?" Naturally there was nothing on the stairs but I was a hero again.

Over the next few months our friendship developed by the pool as we spent our days waiting on the call to work. We had a lot of fun and made many friends in our new town "Atlanta". We both dated a lot of people and were in and out of each others lives. Then finally in the spring of 2001 it occured to me that my life was meaningless and really that I couldn't live the same lifestyle forever. I was a new Captain and was living a life on the party scene but life was empty and shallow. That is really another story!

However, Kristie shows up at my place again (in need of rescue) and she had just broken up with her boyfriend. Things came to me in such clarity that it scared me. I realized Kristie was what I had been waiting for all a long. This realization happened over one afternoon. Frankly, I grabbed her and we had our first kiss. The rest is now history. We were married 7 months later on 20 October 2001! That is how Harry met Kristie.


Thursday, February 12, 2009

Fire in the hole

OH MY GOSH.... you are not going to believe what I have done now.

It is freezing here.... windy and raining and just a freezing cold winter day.

So I decided to build a fire in our fire place. To warm things up a bit. And it was perfect. Warm and cozy.... just a billowing small fire to knock the chill out.

The phone rings.... it's my sister... while talking to her.... I wander upstairs to start preparations for a nice soothing bath.

About 15 minutes later..... I notice the cat sneezing... I hear a popping sound... and I smell smoke!

I tell Kasey I will have to call her back I run downstairs to see what has happened to my small fire.

This is what I found....

Peabody ran for the door... she is so smart!

Eyes burning, nose sniffling.... I run downstairs... open all the doors... trying to unlatch all the windows.....realize that I might have just let the cat out.... so I run back to close all the doors... move all the items away from the front of the fireplace... drop them quickly as they scold my hand.

My eyes are watering... my nose dripping... and now I am freezing cold with all the windows open. Oh what an evening!

About 30 minutes later.... after the smoke had cleared.... somewhat

I only found one item lost in "The Great Smokeout of 2009" a once round candle.

And this is my first night home alone. In a freezing house, filled with smoke, smelling of smoke, and now with a excruciating headache from all the smoke.

Blessings to those with a fiery passion,



blogger templates | Make Money Online