Wednesday, November 26, 2008

In honor Thanksgivning

In honor of the holiday, I thought I share my favorite holiday recipe. Although not appreciated by all of my family, sans two, everybody else loves this one. I look forward to making it each year and only once a year because it's so rich, I could never justify it on any old Monday. If you make it enjoy but beware of the marshmallow backlash!

Christine's Favorite Sweet Potato Bake

3 cups cold mashed sweet potatoes-1 large can
1 c sugar
1/2 c milk
1/4 butter
3 eggs
1t salt
1t vanilla
1t cinnamon
1/2 c packed brown sugar
1/2 c chopped pecans
1/4 c flour
2 T butter

Mix together the first 8 ingredients, put into greased 2 qt baking dish or 9X13. Combine topping ingredients, cut in butter, sprinkle over potatoes. Bake 325 for 50 minutes or more until golden brown. Serves 10-12 people. Enjoy!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Italian Barbecue Sammies

This post is in participation with The Grocery Cart Challenge Recipe Swap.

A big thanks to Rachel Ray for this wonderful recipe...I love her! This is an easy Sunday football meal or a great one to put together when you have the itch for take-out but not the budget.

1 bottle of your favorite Barbecue sauce
6 T butter melted
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 pkg of steak buns--the big hoagie type
1 large strip steak or several small ones
8 slices of Provolone-melts soooo nice!

Melt the butter and add garlic. Spread butter onto open faced buns and put under broiler for 15 minutes until golden brown. Meanwhile cook strip steak with a little salt & pepper and EVOO on stove...until med rare(don't worry if you don't like rare meat because this will cook further under the broiler) Let meat rest 5 minutes before you slice THINLY against the grain. Put healthy squirt of Barbecue sauce on buns, layer with meat and top with cheese. Put back under the broiler until the cheese is gooey and melted. Serve open-faced.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Best Ideas of the Week

1. Crock pot oatmeal
2 apples chopped
1/3 C Brown Sugar
1 t cinnamon
2 C Old Fashioned Oats
4 C water
1 pinch salt

Let cook all night and enjoy with walnuts mixed in if you like. EVERYONE in my house liked this....Amazing!

2. Sock basket in the kitchen
I have an ongoing war with socks at my house. I can never find them when I need them and yet they are always all over my house. Plus my boys seem to think of socks and shoes at the very last moment when getting ready in the morning. I've fought this battle for years...this year I got out of the box. We now keep our(the kids) socks in the kitchen in a basket....I wish it were always full..but I'm getting better at it. It has taken a lot of stress out of my morning...I love it!

3. The grocery cart challenge blog This is a fantastic blog about a super mom who is homeschooling 4 kids and keeping her grocery bill below $100 a week! Amazing. Although I don't aspire to do this...she does have a feature on Thursdays called Recipe Swap, where tons of women link to their favorite recipes. This week I looked at all the links that I thought we would like, cut and pasted the recipes into a word document called Menu, cut and pasted the ingredients into a Word document called grocery list. Printed the list, went grocery shopping and now keep my laptop in my kitchen for dinner time. It's inspired! This simple task has helped me reduce the stress of mealtime immensely and helped me appear like Bree VandeKamp at dinner time....sans the apron.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

The best book I've read...3 times

I've been reading/studying this book for the past 6 months, first alone, now with my sista-friends and my small group. Each time I go through it I feel like I learn something new. Mostly, because the first time I read through this simple book I was quite sure that although I understood the words, the truths were evading me. It's a book that has shaken the foundation of my faith yet, has not contradicted a single belief I hold.

Lately, I've been reading about "The Tyranny of the Favor Line" The invisible line that tells us whether or not we've met enough of someone's expectations to merit their approval. And how, most of our lives we live knowing that this favor line exists in our relationships with other people...and how we assume that God has a favor line as well. The problem is that we never know where it lies. When everything is pleasant we don't think about the favor line much but when things start to encroach on our lives we begin to wonder how God feels about us. Does He love me? Have I offended Him?

One of the questions the author asks is, "How many of you think you pray enough? Read the Bible enough?" How much is "enough?" The tyranny of the favor line is unrelenting because it never allows us to be certain about how God feels about us. And when we are trying to compensate God for his mercy eventually we become aware that our efforts are futile because it's impossible and it leaves us guessing whether he loves me or he loves me not.

I'd love to write out the entire book but I will leave you with one of thoughts that have consumed me for the last few days, "The key to God's favor doesn't rest on what I give to God but what he has already given to me."

Let me encourage you to order this book off of Amazon and use it for your daily study. It's wonderfully challenging...and will open your eyes to discover a Savior you've never known before but who was always there. It's a great read...if anyone's looking for one.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Yes, I have four children. No, I don't have pictures of all of them. Doug and I went away for the weekend and I didn't get to trick-or-treat with the kids or take their pictures. But yes, don't worry I still have four kids.

This is at Wesley's preschool. They allowed us to stay and take pictures but I thought the way they did it was strange. They had us stay for the first 20 minutes of class and then leave. Well, the poor little three year olds were all in tears...I thought it would have made a lot more sense to have the moms come 20 minutes early...less tears that way!

I had a good time taking pictures of Emily. She was dressed for her first boy-girl party the day before Halloween. The sunlight was just perfect that day so I dragged her all over the house and outside...much to her dismay! But I think they turned out great!