Friday, November 25, 2011

Countdown to Sheri's 50th Birthday: 15 down, 35 to go!!!

Thanks to all who have absolutely made my week! After only a week, I have received 15 sets of baby clothes...only 35 to go to get to my goal of 50, which marks my 50th birthday.  I have several others who have promised to send them on to me.  Folks seem to really be responding, and I guess it's in part to it being so close to Christmas, and the fact that for some of us, that symbolizes the birth of Christ.

The gospels tell the story of the birth of Christ.  It's one that stirs my heart repeatedly.  As a mother myself, and becoming a mother for the first time at a young age just like Jesus' mother, I often wondered how she did it, who was there to help her, what her parents thought, what the village people thought.  It makes you wonder if there was a place like a Crisis Pregnancy Center back then,  if she would have used it as a single mother.

Mary went into labor as she and Joseph neared Bethlehem, but there wasn't any rooms for them to stay in.  So the baby Jesus was born in a manger, which for all practical purposes was a barn stable.

I have chickens myself, and spend time in there cleaning in.  It's no place for a baby.  We  kind of get all sentimental and think warm & cozy thoughts imagining the cows nuzzling up close to the baby in the manger, or sheep huddling nearby giving warmth, but I'm thinking it probably wasn't quite like that.  Our mind, in an effort to feel better, tries to put a positive spin on the imagery of a young teenage girl having to give birth in a barn, and the fact is, it couldn't have been a hygienic place and not even all that safe with the animals nearby.

The Women's Care Center in Danville is the mission which we are helping this Christmas season.  Our goal is 50 sets of warm clothes for new babies born to mothers who need help in some way, for what ever reason. If you can't do it for these young girls, do it for the reason for this season-- do it because of Christ, who came into the world to an unmarried teenage girl, born in a barn, surrounded by animals, no midwife or doctor that we know of, probably poor, lonely, and in a strange place.

I am accepting donations up to my birthday on Jan. 3.  The Center also needs a new television for educational purposes and if you'd rather send a donation, that is what we will be buying with it.  Any and all can be sent to me at 14556 N 1020 East Rd., Fairmount IL 61841.

Thank you again!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Countdown to Sheri's 50th birthday: Can you help these kids?

Sheri and part of her brood
I have a lot of children and a lot of grandchildren.  I am thankful and blessed to have this family.  These kids are smart, sharp, loving, compassionate and caring. They are all healthy and happy.

Not all babies are born in such happy conditions.  But ALL  babies deserve love, kindness, patience, and respect, no matter what.

As I mentioned in my last blog, we are in the countdown to my birthday.  I thought my 50th birthday wasn't throwing me for a loop, but it really has.  I have been more nostalgic than ever lately, signed up for, dug up my old pictures, and began journaling for my kids.  I don't think I did anything "mid-life crisis-ish" (although my mother would beg to differ when she heard I had bought a new motorcycle), but I do know I have no regrets, so I am not holding onto a "bucket list" or anything like that.

I'm way past the time of wanting a big to-do for my birthday, or presents, but I do want to do something to mark this time in my life.  So I chose to pick an organization that depends on all of us to help them do their job and help them in some way.

The Women's Care Center in Danville exists to help mothers with unexpected pregnancies, women who are not sure what they are going to do or where to get help, or women with pregnancies who are in household and lifestyle conditions that could lower the quality of life for them and their children.

The center needs warm sleepers and clothes for babies, so I want to provide 50 sets of clothes to send to them.  If you would like to help me with this, I would be thrilled about that. These items must be new, and you can deliver them to me, here at our store in Fairmount, or mail them to me:

Sheri Burns
14556 N 1020 East Rd
Fairmount IL 61841

The center also needs a large screen tv for educational purposes for their clients, and I'd like to be able to gift them with this as well, so for those of you who want to make donations to that, just send a check and put on the memo what it is for.

Thank you all,

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Honey Salad Dressings

Our girls - Nikki- our daughter-in-law, Jill, Karee,
and Jennifer

As we near the holiday season, I like to reflect on the past year.  It's been a good year.  One filled with new things.  It's been a little hard in some ways, but mostly it's been a real blessing.

One of my biggest blessings is, of course, my family. David and I have six terrific children.  What is so neat about our kids is that none of them are in anyway similar--either in looks, temperament, personality, or actions.  It's been fun seeing them grow into their own persons, and watch them choose their professions, their spouses, and take on the world.  It's been scary watching some of them--it's never easy to watch your kids fall (or even fail) and not want to rush in and pick them up.  But they all stand on their own two feet, are strong and independent, and pretty much fun too.

This past year, our oldest daughter Jennifer, along with her family moved back into the area--only about a 10 minute ride straight down our main country road.  It's been a joy seeing her more often and having the grandchildren so close by.  She invited us to come eat with them last night, and served a good honey dressing (along with a few other things as well!). 

I rarely make a salad dressing from a recipe, it's so easy.  I start off putting about 1/4  to 1/2 c of a good olive oil, and 1/4 c - 1/2 c of honey into a canning jar. Add salt and pepper to taste.  Now add an acid of some kind -- could be orange/lemon/lime juice, or a good vinegar like raspberry or apple cider--a few tablespoons should be about right. Now last, add some flavoring, such as seeds, herbs, or spices like mustard and paprika. If you are looking for a creamy dressing, add sour cream or mayo--about 1/4 cup.  Put the lid on that jar and shake away. But for those of you who like an actual recipe, here are a couple:

Honey Mustard Dressing
1/4 c mayo
1 T prepared mustard
2 T honey
1/2 t lemon juice

Honey Poppyseed
1/2 c olive oil
1/2 c honey
1/4 c apple cider vinegar
1 T poppyseeds
1/4 t paprika
1/4 t worcestershire sauce

Honey Orange
1/4 c sour cream
2 T orange juice
2 t chopped green onion
1/4 c honey
1/4 c olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Sheri Lynn Henness
Born January 3, 1962
Today also marks 50 days until my 50th birthday.  I decided I wanted to do something very special for this very special birthday.  I thought of some of the usual things, like maybe a cruise with the kids, or jetting off to Italy with David--but mostly those were just wishes.  So I decided to do something that might make a bigger difference to someone else, so I am going to collect 50 items to take to our local Women's Care Center in Danville, and I need your help.  In my next blog I will tell you what I need to collect, and these items will represent the biggest needs the center has, and if you can, send it on to me, or bring it in to our store, and it will be included in my birthday present to the center on my birthday January 3, 2012. 

Until next time,