These are my all-time favorite bran muffins.  In addition to being incredibly yummy, the batter keeps in the refrigerator for up to 6 weeks!  You can cook up a fresh batch in the morning…you can cook up only a couple or you can feed a crowd!  The versatility works so well in my house.  They may not be the “skinniest” recipe out there, but even my kids like these muffins!  Also, you can do a lot of experimenting with the different kinds of bran cereal you use.  A lot of times I mix more than two kinds to get the total amount I need…I have never had a bad batch!  Sometimes I add some chopped apple to a batch…nuts to another…the options are endless!












Sift together flour, baking soda and salt.

Pour boiling water over whole bran cereal, set aside.

Cream together sugar and shortening in a 6 quart bowl until light.  Add eggs and beat well.  Blend in buttermilk, bran buds and the whole bran cereal.  Add sifted dry ingredients; mix well.

Store in tightly covered container in refrigerator.  Makes enough for 5 dozen muffins.

To bake muffins:  fill greased muffin pan cups 2/3 full of batter.  Bake in 400 degree oven for about 20 minutes.

For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected, if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of Godand prayer.   1 Timothy 4:3


Closet Diva…

January 23, 2011


I have always blamed it on the fact I was the only girl with four brothers. Testosterone flowed freely at my house. No matter what the subject, I was overruled. My childhood was dotted with family gatherings to watch vulnerable animals being chased down on “Wild Kingdom,” and family night consisted of popcorn and All Star Wrestling on TV. My wardrobe was hand me downs from the guys (on the plus side, I had more worn-in Levi’s than any other girl in school!) I had a “pixie” haircut. We had 1 bathroom, and God forbid I should leave something girly around. Even my Mom, bless her heart, had too much to do to indulge in a lot of girliness.

It was only natural I would turn into a Closet Diva.

I started buying teen fashion magazines before anyone else. I started spending my money on makeup and sending for every cologne sample the magazines offered. I didn’t have money or opportunity to buy clothes, but I learned how to sew in the ninth grade and never looked back!

My first real job was as a retail salesperson in a mall store, and the rest is history. Can you say clothing discount???? I worked up to retail assistant manager after a stint in Cosmetology school, and yet my worship of everything fashion and beauty wasn’t quenched. I had the wardrobe, I did hair, what was left?

The answer came when my children were small. I began making jewelry. I have now been in business 9 years and have been very successful at it. I had to start selling it because I became so addicted to buying beads and making jewelry that I needed an outlet!

Now if I could just learn to make shoes…


A Year Ago Today was a really difficult day for me.  One year ago today, April 18, 2007, my divorce was final.  A divorce I didn’t seek, didn’t want, and am still reeling from.  With all the tears and the trauma involved, it’s hard to find the silver linings, but we try.  It’s gotten to be a thing with me and the kids, looking for silver linings.  For example, none of us like chunky spaghetti sauce, but we made it that way “before” because X liked it that way.  So, one of our first silver linings was smooth spaghetti sauce.  Baby steps. 

And there have been lots more silver linings.  My friends and my family have kept me going and have not given up on me.  God has been ever-present and has made me so aware of these silver linings…one of the biggest has been this jewelry business.  It was my hobby business, the one that I kept small because X thought it might interfere with my being support staff for his business, and it might get too busy for me to take care of the kids the way I always had (alone, basically).  But now I see how God gave me this business that was already trying to grow to help me provide for my children during the upheavals of the past year.  I had not worked outside the home before the divorce, and due to the growth of my “hobby business”, I have been fortunate enough to still be working at home. 

Sometimes the inspiration isn’t there.  Sometimes I feel so sad I don’t want to create.  But at other times the ideas flow and the creativity won’t be quieted without hours at my beading table.  My children are so proud of me and I am learning to be proud of myself again.  I went through the Urban Hope program to learn more about entrepreneurship.  I am finishing up my Bachelor’s Degree that has been unfinished for 23 years.

A Year Ago Today, I thought my life was ending.  Sometimes it still feels that way.  But it hasn’t been the end, it’s just the beginning of something new.  I heard once that when we lose something it just makes room for something else to come into our lives.   I have gained much this year, and there’s still room for more.  I will get up tomorrow morning and continue to try to fill it with more silver linings

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