Central Coast Cook

Central Coast Cook
Morro Bay, CA

Monday, December 17, 2012

DIY Tin Gifts

Christmas is tight this year. Tighter than usual and I still have six kids to buy for. They aren't all mine, but they are immediate family. So, I was looking for some unique craft ideas to make their smaller present more personal. I was able to get a few cookie tins and almond containers for free that would have otherwise have been tossed in the trash. I finally started working on them last night.

I decided that I had so many scrapbooking supplies that I needed to put them to use. So after pulling some select items from my drawers I got to work. Here is how they look before I put the pictures on them. I am pretty proud of them.





 Well, what do you think? I am pretty happy with them for my first time. I think the kids will love them, especially when they find all the small wrapped items inside.

Hilary Cook

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Emergency Preparedness - A Bowl Full of Lemons - Part 1


So I have been thinking because the world is changing so much with its weather patterns and such that there is nothing worse than being unprepared. I have been doing a lot of thinking because of the earthquakes we have in California. We aren't really that far away from the San Andreas fault and we can feel earthquakes all the way up as far as San Francisco. Everyone keeps saying that California will drop into the ocean with the "Big One" and if that is true, no amount of emergency preparedness is going to save us, but hey, who knows what will really happen. So we are supposed to locate a emergency center and get a storage rack, backpacks and storage tubs. I am thinking our entry closet would be perfect, but it is a disaster right now. I am thinking of changing that into a emergency/entry/ coat closet. Now I just need to find the time and the tools and a home for the other things stored in it. I have seen some really cute organization ideas for entry closets and I am thinking of designing our closet this way. It will require some wood work from the hubby, but he loves that kind of stuff. Something like this I think.



Saturday, November 17, 2012

Emergency Preparedness December 8th

I am looking forward to starting this very important series with A Bowl Full Of Lemons.


Before & After Bathroom

I finally finished the bathroom cabinet re-organization. I am so excited! Now if I coould just afford some paint and figure out how to give the bathroom a makeover. One thing at a time right? Ok, so here are the new and improved cabinets. Tell me what you think?

Look, I have an empty drawer. I ran out of things to put in it. I am not sure if this is good or bad.

This drawer was full of empty toothpaste tubes after my daughter squirts toothpaste everywhere. The drawer was mostly garbage. I am so pleased with the new drawer.

I think maybe this cabinet still needs some work. I am still happy with the way it turned out.

This top cabinet was a nightmare. What a purging job it turned out to be. I think I am most pleased by the difference in this cabinet.

 I was always afraid to touch anything under the sink. My husband keeps his stuff under there because it was safest from my daughter, but now I wonder if we shouldn't move it to the cabinet. Anyway, here it is for right now. He loves it.

I actually didn't have a before picture for the medicine cabinet, but here is the after picture.

Ok, what do you think? Do you have any suggestions for me? I would love to hear your comments and suggestions.


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Obsessed About Organizing

I have been reading blogs lately. A lot of blogs. From food to crafts to organizing. I never knew there were so many. I have to say, I'm hooked and cooked on these organizing blogs. With the daily feeling that my life is out of control, I knew I needed to do something yet I just didn't know where to start. Some of these wonderful blogs have helped me get started.

So, today, I wanted to talk about some little steps that I am taking to organize my life. My bedroom was first, and it is still a work in progress, but it is too late for before pictures. I will have to take some after pictures at a later time. However, I did have the forethought to do before pictures with our guest bathroom. Even though it is a guest bathroom, 4 people share it. My 6-year old loves to play with toothpste and water and mess up this space often.

So far I am only working on the cabinets and drawers, because paint and decorations will have to come with the money. Here are my before pictures and once I am all done I will post the after pictures.

Under the sink

Bottom half of the cabinet

Top half of the cabinet

Drawer #1

 Drawer #2
 Well, it looks like I forgot to take a before picture of our medicine cabinet, but there will definately be an after picture. Look at all this disorganized stuff.
My daughter helped me purge the cabinets and shelves, except for one. We had several power outages while were doing this and we just plain ran out of time. Either way, I only have one more cabinet to finish. Hopefully I can get to it in the next week and complete my follow up post. Let me know what you think.

Friday, October 19, 2012

In Memory

We lost a good friend on Thursday. He died in a freak accident. His girlfriend Tricia is really suffering and I just wish I could take the pain for her. She has been through so much already. Now she is being hurt by his family as well. I don't understand why people become such nasty, hurtful, vultures after someone dies. Every time someone dies, there is always one person who makes the situation bad. I had this happen to me as well. Usually, it is family that really commits the greater problem. Especially when it is family against family. Having been a victim of this way of thinking, I am disgusted by it. Isn't the loss hard enough? People who take it upon themselves to sell personal property that wasn't meant for them is despicable. People who come into to someone's home who is grieving and helps themselves to the deceased person's items is trespassing. Be respectful people!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Cage of Fear

Sunday's message was given by my brother in Christ Brandon Buck and he did an awesome job. He usually does. He talked about trusting in God and God's promises. We have many promises from God, but we still have a hard time trusting Him. He has never failed us, but we constantly fail Him. Still, even so, He keeps His promises. Proverbs 3:5 and Proverbs 29:25. Fear is a trap, a cage with an open door we are too afraid to walk out of.

I had been trapped in a cage of fear for a long time. It wasn’t until I came back to church and started healing from the pain inflicted on me over so many years that I finally found the courage to take the out-stretched hand and come out of the cage. Mind you, I still did it shaking in my boots, but I made it out. Sometimes I still find myself wanting to crawl back in, but I have lots of support who are willing to step between me and that cage and help me up and back on my feet.

It really has been the Lord, looking at me like a beloved child and telling me that I am worth it to bolster my strength. My church family is a huge support system and I love each one of them, right where they are. We are all learning and growing together. I have hope again because I have been released from my cage. I have the love of several people. I have the love of my Heavenly Father and I know that everything will be alright in the end.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

My Wish List Part 1

My Wishlist 4/18/12 (To Be Continued)

It seems like there might be some merit to this bucket list thing, so I thought, why not make one. I don't see it as being much different than a wish list, so perhaps that is what I will call it instead. So, these are some of the things I would like to see happen before I leave this world.

  1. I want to see my son graduate. He is 19 and still stuck dragging his feet halfway through 11th grade.
  2. My daughter to learn to stop stealing, and destroying things and her attitude change. For a 6 year old, it just isn't cute. She is proving to be quite willful.
  3. Get out of my mom's house and into a place of my own.
  4. To see my friends and family come to Christ and find healing from the pains in life.
  5. Touch everyone's life in a positive and significant way.
  6. I would love to see Bella’s dad make a real effort to be a Father instead of a cameo in her life, taking credit for creating her and enjoying the idea of being a dad without any of the work involved in raising her up.
  7. I would love to see my church family come together in unity, and our Pastor not have to run his health ragged working with us.
  8. I would like a cat with a temperament that Panthira possessed. She was a true therapy cat.
  9. I would love to go back to Plymouth, MA just one more time.
  10. I would love to go to Ireland, just once for a week.
  11. I would love to love my husband in a way so deeply that it would drown out the love I have had for others.
  12. I would love to learn to play the violin.
  13. I would love for the stress to ease and my stomach to stop attacking me.
  14. I would love to live somewhere breathtakingly beautiful.
  15. I would love to have more time to spend at the beach.
  16. I would love to get down to 150 obs.
  17. I would love to not have to take any medication for anything.
  18. I would love to have time for fun. I don't get to do fun anymore.
  19. I would love to be able to finish reading the Bible all the way through.
  20. I would like to learn about Bible Prophecy & Archaeology much more.
  21. I would love to finish my cross stitch projects.
  22. I would love to learn how to draw/paint really well.
  23. I would love to do more scrapbooking.
  24. I want to be a better mom.
  25. I would love to go to Israel before the Rapture.

Friday, April 13, 2012


It's raining tonight. I love the rain, but then I always have. Everything feels cleaner when it rains. I always felt like the rain was washing me clean from the inside out. I would have to liken the rain to God's tears, shed over a dying world. His tears and His blood has cleansed me from sin so deep I couldn't find my way out. The rain doesn't bring me down, instead it makes me calm, I can sleep better and there is the feeling that someone out there understands me.

I used to feel depressed, the rain hiding my tears, but now things are different. I have joy for the first time in years. Life is worth looking forward to. I have a new extended famiy who support and love me no matter what. There is a safety with them I haven't experienced before. No matter what I share, they love me through the healing processes. It is a wonderful thing to have others help shoulder the load. I find such joy in helping others in the same way, though I guess I always have.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Resurrection Day 2012

Tomorrow is Easter/Resurrection Sunday. This cross is the symbol of my hope. I have hope again because Jesus died on a cross long before I was born, knowing that I would need salvation. He knew I could not reach Heaven without help. Death and Hell were conquered when He rose from the grave. Thank you Lord for a second chance. Thank you for bringing my hope back. Thank you for healing the hurts. May I always remember what you have done for me. Love you Abba!


Got a chance to talk to my sister today. It has been a long time since we last talked. I could totally understand where she is at right now. She claims she is hopeless, but I know from personal experience that no one is hopeless. I know that hope can be restored, but it takes a spiritual conversion and faith to find it again. It is hard because I know my sister is not a believer. I find it hard to talk to her about the joy and hope and peace that I have found with God's help. While I ran from God, all I ever found was sinking despair. Something was always missing and it wasn't until I came into a personal relationship with Christ that I found what was missing. There are always the fears of rejection when you want to talk to loved ones about God. I find more peace in loving the hurting than in mocking their pain like I used to. I used to feel like a monster. I prided myself on being emotionally cold and hard hearted. I loved that people were afraid of me. Over time the isolation ate me alive inside and all I wanted to do was die. I felt hopeless too and dead inside. Now I find myself an active member in a ministry of tears. Liquid prayers that fall for those who are hurting. I feel her pain like no other because we have always shared a unique bond. It breaks my heart to know she hurts so much. I only wish I could show her what I have seen, but it is something that has to be experienced for oneself, and it is not a fast process but a slow and painful one. Healing from the pain can't happen without facing it head on. In the past few years I have found so much healing from past pain that my burdens are so much lighter. Hope has been restored.

Friday, April 6, 2012


I recently lost a dear love and friend. He wasn't perfect, but he summed up just about everything you could ask for in a man. You see, he was only 43, but already he died from heart disease. We hadn't spoken in two years. You see, we had broken up several years before. I just got tired of waiting for him to make a decision about how much farther our relationship should go, plus I had moved back home. We had both hurt each other over the years, but the heart connection has always there. After coming home I was a mess. I was struggling through debt, my son wasn't doing well in school and I was desperately trying to find a way to end the feud between my mother and my grandmother. We still talked on the phone almost every night, but the distance was just too much after awhile. Plus, he wanted a child of his own, and I just wasn't willing. I realize now I was just a coward. Add other failed relationships and an unexpected pregnancy and we were pretty much no longer communicating. I was in the middle of a difficult relationship and just needed to connect with someone who made me feel safe and understood. That was Dave, he was one of my best friends. I just needed to feel loved, because I wasn't feeling it at all. My grandmother had died without reconciling with my mother and things were hard. My youngest child's father almost died when she was 1 year old, I was just a mess. I was in church, but my relationship with God was just starting over. So, I was fresh out of a relationship, trust money came available and I figured a vacation was exactly what I needed. So off to Portland I went. I had Dave fly to San Jose to drive up with me. It was a very long drive and we got the chance to talk about everything. Our time together was limited because of his job so I spent most of my time with other friends. Even though the familiarity and love was still there, it had definately changed. So after another attempt at getting back together, I realized that there were things he just couldn't forgive me for. I had to walk away and start fresh. It killed me to remove him from my friend's list and stop calling, it was like ripping myself apart. So now he is gone and there is no longer a chance to say good-bye. You would think I would feel so broken emotionally, but I have hope. I had lost hope years ago, but as my relationship with God strengthens, so my hope has returned. I will always miss Dave and he will always be in my heart, yet I have hope that I will see him again for eternity in a better place. We will have that chance to come together better then we ever were. I thank God for the hope to get through another day. I may have lost my love, but we will be reunited again. Even though the Lord has given me another wonderful man in my life who can bring a smile to my face, the one that didn't work out will always be missed.

R.I.P. Dave Duerksen 2012