Family Photo 2015

Family Photo 2015

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Statements by Keller: Coloring outside the lines!

It is hard to believe that our little boy is now 6 years old today! It is no secret that this kid has lived a lot of life and has no doubt made a lasting impression in this short amount of time! As Ashley and I watch him learn and grow, we are reminded of how God has truly blessed us as parents and how He has protected Keller!
But this post is about the humorous side of our son! Indeed, Keller has been blessed with an amazing sense of humor and is always keeping us laughing. If you haven't, take a moment and read through a couple of my other post titled "Statements by Keller," you'll be glad you did!
Since it is Keller's birthday, I had to dedicate this post to him and his wild ideas! This was a conversation Keller had with Ashley one day after school! If you follow my wife on facebook, you have already heard this story...but feel free to read and laugh again!

"Me: Kel, your teacher said you followed directions but did poor coloring, what do think you should do differently on the next paper?
Keller:well, I just think coloring inside the lines is too pretty for me, but I will try!#whatakid"

Welcome to our world! Enjoy the ride!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Thou O Lord...again!

So this week our Worship Choir is singing one of my favorite anthems. As I was reading and preparing my heart for the day and the week ahead, I remembered that I posted about this very song a couple of years ago. So I decided to re post it since I am in a new place with new people and new choir. May He continue to lift your head in the days ahead.

Monday, October 12, 2009
Thou O Lord

I have to confess that after writing last week's blog, the week went down hill pretty fast! I found myself becoming very overwhelmed with some of the responsibilities of my life. My mood was not the best, and I am sure I was not very easy to live with...just ask my wife!
In the midst of all of this, my wife decided that we should take a step back and get away from it all. So naturally we did what we Gage's do best...we went shopping! BTW, there are some good sales going on right if you can, don't miss out! And of course I did purchase some items to add to our fall home collection. But I will explain that in another blog.
As we were driving back home, I was listening to some of the music that our worship choir is working on this year! One of my favorite songs that we are singing is "Thou O Lord." It is based off of Psalm 3. When I first heard this song several years ago, I heard it as a great sounding song and not applying much thought into what is was really saying. But as I was driving down this highway, I could feel His word speaking to me. In that moment I realized that one of the hardest things we do as Christians, as people, is trying to rely fully on God. In speaking of myself, I know that I tend to trust my creativity, my talent, my socialization, and my professional abilities, when I know I should be trusting in Him.
Later that night during my quiet time, I decided to go back and read this Psalm. In my bible, the subtitle of the psalm states "A Psalm of David, when he fled from his son Absalom." The psalm was written during horrible time in David's life. If you get a chance, read 2 Samuel 15-17, and note all the "drama" that was surrounding his life. After reading these chapters and this psalm, my heart was humbled for several reasons. For starters, the issues that I am facing cannot be compared to anything that David walked through. Treachery, betrayal, mutiny, a wayward son; these are very ugly circumstances. Surely, if God could handle all this, then my issues of weariness, discontent, disappointment are a speck of dust. Mostly, I was humbled as I read how David handled himself during this period of his life. He claims God as his shield, his source of protection (psalm 3:3).
I know I have not received a threat on my life...yet; but I cannot ignore the feeling that sometimes there is a battle raging around me. I have to ask, if you have ever felt the same way? My heart's desire and challenge is that I want handle attacks, insults, and criticism the way David did. I believe that David considered the words against him for what they were worth, analyzed them for any truth and discarded the rest. To do something like that, in the midst of all these challenges, takes an extra measure of wisdom, grace, and peace; which can only come from Him.
The bottom line is that, throughout all that was surrounding David, he fully relied on the God who made him lie down, sleep, and wake again due to His sustaining love for him.
What is the battle surrounding you? What is the circumstance that is so great in your life? Are your relying on your abilities or are you relying on Him?

"Thou O Lord, are a shield for me, my glory and the lifter of my head."


Sunday, January 22, 2012

Gage Gooey Chocolate Butter Cake

I was a little worried about posting this recipe with all the news about Paula Deen but the truth is...a little sugar and butter never hurt long as you immediately go on a five mile bike ride or run, right?
In all seriousness, I don't think it is wrong to enjoy a little dessert from time to time, and even as I am journeying through my own weight loss journey, I know and understand that I cannot-regardless of the amazing taste- partake in foods like this gooey butter cake and other comfort foods on a daily basis. But enough with all the health talk...listed below is my version of the Chocolate Gooey Butter Cake. I think the only difference between my version and Paula Deen's version is that I use one less stick of butter, and I use Mexican vanilla!


For the Crust
1 Chocolate Cake mix (regular chocolate works best but have tried Devil's food and German Chocolate)
1 stick butter (melted)
1 egg
1 teaspoon of vanilla

For top layer:
8 oz. Soften Cream Cheese
1 box of powdered sugar
2 eggs
5 tablespoons of cocoa powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Lightly grease 13X9 pan and set aside

1. In small bowl, mix the cake mix, egg, melted butter and vanilla until well blended making a dough type texture.
2. Pat the mixture into the greased baking dish and set aside.
3. With a mixer, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add eggs and powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
4. Add cocoa powder to cream cheese mixture and beat until smooth
5. Pour Cream cheese mixture with the first layer in the baking dish.
6. Place in oven and bake for 35-40 minutes. Top layer should have golden color and crackled look.
7. Remove from oven and let cool.
8. Cut cake into square pieces and serve with dollop of Whipped Cream and shaved chocolate pieces. You can also serve with fresh strawberries.

***Please note, if you don't like chocolate, you can make this a traditional Gooey butter cake. Simply switch the chocolate cake mix for a yellow cake mix and remove the cocoa powder from the filling.

Happy eating!!!!


Friday, January 20, 2012

Where Good Will and T9 Texting Collide

Does anyone else have a love/hate relationship with their cell phones? We "ooo" and "Ahh" at all the cool things it can do for us. But some of those features can really work your nerves...which brings us to another thrilling and funny blog post.
Anyone who knows me knows that I love social media! My social media swagger was kicked up a notch when I got this crazy new cell phone. Because like many of us, it is so important for us to stay connected to email, facebook, twitter and now pinterest; so naturally I send a lot of these updates from my phone. For me, it is important for all my status updates, tweets, post, to serve a purpose...whether that be food for thought, spiritual reflection, or a good ol belly laugh. Today I was reminded of a Twitter post called "Friday 5". You are suppose to list the 5 things you are thankful for that day. Just another way for us to take our minds off the negative things happening around us and to take a moment and reflect on the good. As I was reading a couple of post from some twitter followers, I realized that I had not posted my "Friday 5" on facebook. Without a moment of hesitation, I pulled up the Facebook page on my phone and quickly typed in my 5 things. I am not sure why I was in a rush to post my knowledge there isn't a deadline (unless you count midnight as the deadline). There was much relief once I pressed send and I confess that I was anticipating some great responses from my FB friends! And then....the beeps from my cellphone starting coming in, informing me of all the people making comments and posting what I thought were their own "Friday 5" items. By the third comment in, I realized something was not quite right with the responses. So I went back into facebook and here is what I see:
"My Friday five is week are: creativity,laughter, songs that tug at your heart, paint rollers, and pinterest! What five thongs are you thankful for today!"

I thought my eyes were playing tricks on me! I thought I was positive that I typed the word "things". But alas, there it was...with eight comments in 5 minutes or less. The Evil One, aka T9 predict text, had struck again! There was a brief moment of shame and disappointment..."How could you let this happen, Ryan?" But then I got the giggles as more and more of you kept commenting. More importantly, despite the word flub, people started posting their "Friday 5" items! so I guess I accomplished 2 of my social media goals today...reflection and laughter.

But I hope this does not make me lose my Social Media Swagger!
Oh be careful little fingers what you post (clap,clap)


Monday, January 2, 2012

Dad Life (Father's Day Opening 2010)

If you like my Parenthood blog stories, you will love this video!

And So We Begin...Again

Its the second day of January; the second day of this grand new year...and I am already behind! How is that even possible? How does that happen...or the better question would be, "why do we let that happen?" It is safe to say that at some point, we have all been inspired to make life changing new year's resolutions...only to have them fizzle out by the end of the month...or even, the end of the first week. We then find ourselves feeling downhearted because we could not keep that one simple plan of losing weight, or spending less time on the computer, etc, etc.
For me, I didn't want 2012 to be mired down in defeat by March, because I only lost 3 pounds, or because I only sent one thank you note instead of fifty, or that I started writing a New Years blog the second day of the new year! Instead of viewing New Year's as a clean crisp marker board, I am viewing it as a gently used chalked board; eager to be clean, ready to be's why. We all understand that each year rolls over into the next. As much as we want our lives to start fresh and the things/troubles of the previous year to disappear at midnight, the truth is, sometimes, they roll over with us. Just like a chalk board, you erase the old sentence to write something new, but the chalk dust from that previous statement is still lingering on the board(even when you use wet cleaning cloth, there is still a residue)...even in the midst of the new statement; the new life change.
But here is the good news; The past is just that...the past. We are called to forget the past. Remember these scriptures:

"Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past" Isaiah 43:18

"He will wipe every tear from their eyes...for the old order of things has passed away." Revelation 21:4 (paraphrased)

These scripture remind us that even though things have happened in the past, we do not have to stay trapped in it. There may be consequences from those things...but that does not give us license to wallow in the things of the previous year. Remember, He is making all things new and He has a plan for all of us....Plans to give us a hope and a future(reference Jeremiah 29:11). Yes, you can learn from the past, but once you have learned from it, put it away.

And so...I have chosen to not write down any resolutions this year, Partly because I am still working on the resolutions I wrote last year. Plus, I know I am not perfect, and that there will always be something to work on, and I already write enough to do list, do I really need to write one more? (those that know me well are NOT free to comment here)In addition, I am learning to say no to the habits, commitments, things, attitudes, and even people, that are not working in my life. More importantly, I am starting this new year with God first! He has revealed Himself time and time again! He has shown his faithfulness and extended his grace in my life in 2011 and all the other years since why wouldn't He do it again?

Because of who and all that He is, my resolution is to start each day eager to worship him; to take more time and be still in His presence, to embrace all that he puts before me. By placing my obedience to Him first, I trust that He will give me the strength, courage, energy, passion to fulfill those so called resolutions.

2012 is already poised to be a life changing year in the Gage Family. We embrace the journey, ready to seek and follow His will for our lives with the understanding that He is able to do immeasurably more then we could ask or seek.

May He bless you and your family in 2012!