“This is a Month of Celebration for You”


photo courtesy of Schramsberg Vineyards

“January is a month of celebration for you”

I heard these words in my heart while sitting with Holy Spirit one day this month, shortly after, I heard the word, “disgorgement”.

I looked up the word “disgorgement” and found different definitions.

The definition I believe the Lord is speaking to me is ~

“Disgorgement, or dégorgement in French, is a step in making Champagne and other bottle fermented sparkling wines. After the second fermentation the wine rests on the dead yeast cells (called “lees”) for a period of time, usually a minimum of 15 months for NV Champagne and a minimum of 3 years for vintage dated Champagnes (though most producers age for much longer then the minimum). This is called aging “sur lie”, or on the lees. Disgorgement is the process of taking these dead lees or sediment out of the bottle, so that when we buy the Champagne or sparkling wine it is crystal clear. Before the disgorgement step takes place the individual bottles are riddled at an angle, so that the lees (sediment) accumulate and collect in the neck of the bottle. This makes for easier and more uniform removal.” http://www.thekitchn.com

This definition spoke to me, especially the words “crystal clear” as I have been praying for clarity and discernment in timing of desires of my Heart.

Disgorgement in Champagne or sparkling wine is all about clarity & timing.

This is a great article by Tyson Stelzer in the Decanter magazine called “Champagne disgorgement: it’s all in the timing” about Champagne & the disgorgement process, I particularly liked the Bollinger tasting notes below… notice the drink dates, to be enjoyed for years to come!


Bollinger, RD Extra Brut 2002
“The sheer energy, bold complexity and shimmering minerality of La Grande Année 2002 finds even greater focus and honed definition with half the dosage and another few years on lees. One of Champagne’s youngest late-disgorged releases, it begs for another decade for its full magnificence to emerge. Drink 2022-2037”

As I write this, I can hear the frogs chirping outside, a cacophony, reminding me of my favorite sparkling wine in the world… Schramsberg… the winery has a pond with their signature frog statue in the center of the pond.

I sense Holy Spirit is saying to me, “trust in the process… for my Hand is in everything, let My Heart guide you in every season… to fully emerge into all that is meant to be, be joyful in the process, relax, enjoy life, let time take its course… you are worth the wait”

I can choose to celebrate others, laugh, live, love, encourage others! I celebrate your individual process as you are a Champagne to be celebrated of your very own… as you sparkle and shine with all the brilliance that God made you to be! The process might seem enduring yet know your Loving Father is celebrating you every moment of the way! He loves you more than anyone could love you on this Earth. He has prepared and stored for you a wine cellar in Heaven to be released here on Earth and celebrated! You are unique! No one bottle of Champagne is the same. You are your own unique vintage, timing, creative process. You are an original not to be compared.

What I am personally going through right now in my life is to not be afraid, not to be afraid to live as I am created to be, not to be afraid of the creative process, trust in the timing and the process, there is excitement and an expectation of a child to be with Holy Spirit, trusting Him and loving Him every day, I choose to rest in the thought of not doing anything without Him, there is clarity… He is a Celebrator! Yes, it is a time to celebrate, Holy Spirit, you created celebration! I celebrate with you and am excited about you too! Cheers Holy Spirit, in You will I wait!

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“The Best Pancakes… EVER!”


I woke up this morning saying in my inside voice,

“I want to make the best pancakes ever!”

I felt the excitement of the new day, new year, sweet beginnings. Pancakes are what I desired to make.

I enjoy cooking with Jesus in the kitchen. I cook with Him, we talk heart to heart. It is a place where I enjoy relationship with Him. I typed “ the best pancakes ever” in Google search, a blog caught my eye called “Once Upon a Chef” with a recipe titled, “Best Breakfast Pancakes”inspired by the New York Times Cookbook.

“Fun!”, I thought. I had my coffee in one hand, cozy pajamas on, and Pandora music playing on the “Hey Jude” inspired station. “Somewhere over the Rainbow” by Israel Kamakawiwo’Ole  came on followed with”Your Song” by Elton John. I decided to dance awhile first with the Lord! I adored these two songs in a row! I like to say I have a pair of DJ angels that live with me! Inspired music happens around me a lot, a love language!

As I began to move in the kitchen, I heard, “Prepare ye the Way of the Lord” (adapted from Mark 1:3 in the Bible!) yet in my Spirit I saw the word “Prepare” broken up like this “Prep” as in prepping foods in the kitchen, followed by “you have My heart, you are prepared to start” followed by “My heart is for you to start, that is the first part.” I was encouraged by these “new day” words from Holy Spirit.

As I poured my prepared egg & milk mixture into the heart inspired batter, I heard, “My heart is with you”


The theme I took away from the conversation was “Heart”.

God reminded me of what he told me one day last year,

“If your Heart is in it, win it!”

I am in God’s Heart and as I create with Him, our hearts beating as One, I am inspired!

Holy Spirit, will you show me how to cook with you in the kitchen? Only with You will I be satisfied completely with your flavors of JOY, LOVE, HOPE, PEACE in and out of the kitchen.

Happy New Year 2016!!!

What will my Heart bring to the table this year?

I Have no fear, I am DEEPLY LOVED by CHEF GOD,

His Perfect Love removes all Fear! (adapted from 1 John 4:18)

With His Love,

Best Breakfast Pancakes
By Jennifer Segal, adapted from The New York Times Cookbook
Servings: 6-8 large pancakes
Total Time: 15 Minutes

1 cup all-purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off with back edge of knife
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar (I used a little coconut sugar too)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons milk (I used toasted coconut almond milk)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
Vegetable oil, for cooking ( I used coconut oil)

Combine the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt in a bowl and mix well.Beat the egg and milk together in a bowl. In a different bowl, add the milk mixture to the melted butter, stirring constantly with a whisk to blend.Pour the milk mixture into the dry ingredients and stir just enough to moisten the flour mixture. It should look a little lumpy. (If you overwork the mixture, the pancakes will be tough.) This is a thick batter but if it seems too thick, add a bit more milk.
Heat a griddle or nonstick pan over medium heat and coat it with vegetable oil. Drop the batter from a large spoon (about 1/4 cup) and cook until the first side is golden brown, or until the top surface bubbles and is dotted with holes. Flip and cook until the other side is golden brown. This happens quickly so peek after 30 seconds and watch carefully! Adjust the heat setting if necessary. Wipe the griddle totally clean with a paper towel between batches. Serve immediately.

Copyright © Once Upon a Chef

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Que Syrah, Syrah!

God led me tonight to read past stories I have written, this is one of my favorite stories and one that is right on time for harvest… the food and wine theme in reading these past stories tonight is “Provence”… wine in hand is a rose’ from Cotes de Provence… with that I raise my glass to “to all that is good… to a good harvest 2014 in the vineyard of our hearts!”


Almost a year ago, I dined in San Francisco’s Mission District at an Italian neighborhood joint… Delfina. It was an amazing culinary experience and the treasure for me was the taste of luscious, creamy butter beans on my palette. These were the first butter beans I had tasted outside of my Granddad’s garden. Butter beans are my all time favorite bean… which is an influence of my Granddad’s Alabama upbringing… they are a true Southern staple!

 I had just taken in a 49er’s game with my friends, Tom & Gustavo. We went to Delfina after our WIN to imbibe in great food, even better wine, and best of all… lots of laughter! During conversation, it came up that my mother’s wonderful friends, Amy Jo & Ab, were coming out to the wine country with their in-laws in tow… I couldn’t wait to see them! They both looked at each other, smiled…

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“to all that is good”

… in the beginning God created… & it was good.

i have been meditating on these three words lately… “in the beginning”

the meaning of the words resonated with my girlfriends and i this past monday as we were gathered for god.food.wine. a feast that never ceases to amaze the palette of our hearts, minds, and taste buds! we pondered and treasured God’s heart for us, our heart for Him, love…. we spoke of and celebrated new beginnings, sparked and rekindled forgotten beginnings, encouraged and inspired the creation of limitless beginnings… hearts’ desires.

… in the beginning God created… & it was good….

begin with the idea of knowing you were wonderfully created… to you… “to all that is good in life!”

love, amy.




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~ For Eternity ~

“I look at You and I see myself, I look at You and I see my World, as long as we’re together, time can’t touch Us.” ~ Eternity.Calvin Klein

God is outside of time.

“There are many loves but only one Obsession” ~ Obsession.Calvin Klein

Heaven is my Obsession.

“what begins here is real.what begins here is true.what begins here is pure.
what begins here never ends.” ~ Eternity.Calvin Klein

I have Eternal Life. I will never die. Jesus’s perfume is within my Heart.

Eternity and Obsession are both perfumes for men and women… timeless.passionate.extreme.fragrance never ending.

The fragrance of My Love never looks back… enduring forever. ~ adapted from
1Corinthians 13

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Brand New Key


Item Condition: Used Once – purchased at a roller skating rink in Dallas for my roller skating birthday party… worn only that day!

My “Birthday Lap” was an unforgettable moment for me. It was 7:30ish am on a muggy winter Friday morning in Dallas, Texas.  I was meeting the owners, a husband and wife duet, at Interskate Roller Skating Rink, before they opened for business that day. My purpose of meeting with them was to clarify a few details about the birthday party that was happening that evening at their rink to celebrate “February Friends’ Birthdays!”  I had my outfit chosen… chocolate brown terrycloth romper, white knee high socks with hot pink stripes that circled around the upper portion of the socks right below the knees, a hot pink Members Only jacket found at a vintage store on Greenville Avenue in Dallas – PERFECT! All I needed (in my mind) was a brand new pair of roller skates… and… there they were… staring at ME that Friday morning… for sale at the rink that was to begin my 30 – something year with a POP…. a brand new pair of Olympian Plus Belair white leather roller skates! After Bernie sold me on hot pink shoelaces and pom poms with bells to round out my birthday outfit, I rationalized my almost $200 purchase with a request for a “birthday lap” around the rink with the music turned up loud. I wanted to try out my newly purchased roller skates on the shiny, clean, maple floor of Interskate Roller Skating Rink before anyone else. Bernie turned on the music, “Brand New Key” and off I rolled to my first birthday lap of the season.  It was fun, my own private moment. I was turning thirty-something, I had a dream to create a roller skating party for me and my friends who shared February as a birthday month. As I skated around the rink, I reminisced about my days as a little girl going to roller skating lessons, winning roller skating trophys, having and going to roller skating parties… the smells of used rental roller skates, popcorn, soda, the musty, sweaty smells… all of it came back to me… the shiny, clean, maple, round rink embraced my eyes as Bernie turned the lights down low that magnified the neon lights on the rink… backwards skate anyone?

That evening, our rollerskating party started around 10pm… me and my friends rolled in the margarita machine, beers, wines, sodas, waters, pizzas, cupcakes… inserted every rollerskating themed movie we could find into the DVD players, Xanadu, Boogie Nights, Roll Bounce… LET’S ROLL!

Friends started entering into the rink looking mighty fine as the music disco tunes of the 70’s and rock hits of the 80’s welcomed their presence… dressed in their finest roller skate attire – afros, skates, rompers, Members Only jackets, rock concert t-shirts, washed out jeans, halter tops, shorts, mullets, sunglasses… we placed our skates on the rink and dropped, popped, and locked it! It was an unforgettable night.

My very first kiss was at a roller skating rink in Odessa, Texas in 6th grade. I never cease forgetting the exciting rush and nervousness of kissing a boy that was to me the most beautiful boy I had ever seen… Latin… with a foreign accent… his name was Efren and I was totally mesmerized by him. As he kissed me, I felt light headed in my rented out roller skates. I knew that kissing boys wasn’t permitted (as my parents had instilled in me) which added a new level to my exhilaration.

I have a brand new car, well, it’s used actually… its brand new to me. It is a 2003 Acura RSX, black, sporty… I call my car “Roller Skate” It symbolizes a new era of car freedom as I had to surrender my last car back to the lender, it was too expensive to keep up with and for 3 months, I did not have my own car. It was a challenging, emotional, humble, strong, and gracious time as I learned about giving and receiving to a new degree. My friends and colleagues generously gave of their time and love to help me get around town whether driving me themselves, carpooling, or lending me their car for periods at a time. I have amazing people in my life, I am so thankful. I made some great friends with taxi cab drivers who even on some days… as I was getting out my wallet, said… “not today, its on me” to the boldest story… a ride back from Napa to Santa Rosa in a  Bear Republic beer truck… a GOD story (one I will share in another blog), one that I will always Cheers to!! God has a sense of humor and can use circumstances and creative means to introduce people, just sayin!!

God has given and is giving me “brand new keys” in my life, He has taught and teaches me about living and loving from His roller skating rink… His HEART. I love to roller skate with God and as we skate, laugh, sing, and create new moves of our hearts together in infinity fashion, a new path lights up and creates new styles, new forms, new POP!

There is one “brand new key” that I am waiting for and I know God is picking the perfect timing. I am excited and lightheaded to think about the man that God has chosen for me to roller skate the rest of my life with… my husband. He has the “brand new key” to my heart that will begin the “couples skate only” in the roller skating rink of God’s heart…  together… as we Pop, Lock, and Drop our romance for the rest of our lives to infinity!

And to that I raise a glass of a good ole’ Texas Margarita and say, “To you, my husband… I gotta a brand new heart, you gotta a brand new key”


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A Pure & Crazy Heart… The Story.

Once upon a time, there was a beautiful princess who had whatever hair color she wanted and who loved to paint her toes a lovely rainbow hue while singing Cyndi Lauper’s “Girls Just Want To Have Fun” along with her friends and talk about lovely, handsome princes …no…no…every romantic castle story seems to start that way…hmm, hmm…

Once upon a time there was a large horned frog that lived outside the castle where he was once living as a handsome prince with his best buddies that he loved to play sports with, watch shows on the largest flat screen TV in all the land, play music (he happened to favor the ukulele) and talk about fair ladies before the evil one cast a spell…. no, no, no…. let me try again…

OK… “Once Upon a Time…there was a woman who lived in the wine country of Zoe who happened to run into a gargantuous castle surrounded by water and a secret bridge that she so happily discovered and as the story goes…is how she began to live her life at that gargularious castle and all who heard of this were amazed…people around her suddenly noticed that good things were ALWAYS happening to her…it surprised people who knew her and as they watched her life unfold…some were happy for her, others were jealous, and then again…others… didn’t believe that the way she received good things were pure…for you see,

…her heart was the purest heart in the land…

…and pure hearts are something that is hard for the world to understand…

She was enjoying living life in her castle with her family and friends all around her (as castles can house all the people you love and even people who you don’t know who are in need of a cozy castle) people flocked to her home…and as they entered felt the presence of “something different”, an air that blanketed them with peace and passion. You could imagine that maybe a fairy godmother or a fairy whose name ends in Bell and tinkers with Twinkies… I mean Twinkle Dust…could be the reason that all things were lovely at this castle…yet it just wasn’t so…

…Wait, PAUSE…the story for a moment…for all you adults…let me explain…this story is best read from a child’s heart…simple and true….rest your mind…imagine.

This is the first chapter of the story…sweet dreams…say your prayers… I will continue the story…till the end…tomorrow… see how they lived happily ever after… Amen.

… and to that I raise a glass of Preston Barbera and say…love, live, laugh… in a castle!”

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