Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Plans Derailed...And An Attitude Check

Is it just me, or do you ever have those times where you spend time making plans and getting all ready to have fun and those plans for fun get derailed because they are interrupted by real life?

Well,this past week was one of those times for me. My sister was coming from Colorado for a visit. She was bringing with her three of her children and two of her grandbabies. We had been busy for weeks making plans, and we were all set to have us some fun! Little did we know, our plans would have to be set aside since my niece’s baby ended up in the hospital, having surgery while she was here. (It ended well, but my niece had to delay their flight home and go back home this morning, two days after the rest of the group.)

Apparently when her doctor checked her last week before coming, her ear infection wasn’t showing yet or something. So we were quite shocked when the doctors at urgent care sent her across town to the children’s hospital because the infection had gotten into her bone and she was going to need surgery. Who even knew that an ear infection could get into the bone? It's so rare that even the doctors treating her had never seen it.

Anyway.....I have to admit, my first reaction to the news that she had to be admitted into the hospital was disappointment. Disappointment that she was so sick, but also that our plans for fun had been derailed. That sounds so selfish that I'm cringing even as I put it in writing. But don’t you worry, the Lord was quick to give me an attitude check and remind me that none of this was a surprise to Him. Jeremiah 29:11 came to my mind:

“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord.
“They are plans for good and not for disaster,
to give you a future and a hope.”

Is that as reassuring to you as it is to me? God knows the plans he has for each one of us. So, I redirected my thoughts to being thankful. Thankful that NOTHING is a surprise to God. Thankful that God’s plan for Tylee was that she was here in a city with a children’s hospital to have the best team of doctors to care for her. Thankful that I could be with my sister and niece during this crisis. And so incredibly thankful that the Lord is quick to remind me that He is in control.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Fruitful Friday - Nourishment

Today I am fasting...

When I sat down to write today's post, I was impressed with the word "Nourishment". Though I am not "nourishing" my body with food today, God is wanting me to ponder what it means to nourish myself. So I looked up the definition for this word:

Nourishment -
  • That which sustains
  • Something fit to be eaten
  • To promote or sustain growth
  • The source of the materials necessary to support life
  • To supply with matter that promotes health and increase
As a woman, mother, wife, daughter, etc. there are many ways in which I can choose to nourish myself; body, soul and spirit. I am so blessed to live in a place where I actually have a choice of what I can eat. But today, I made the choice to abstain.

Rather than just eating something for the sake of eating, I want to stop for a moment and thank God for all of the types of nourishment I receive. Just like the different types of food nourish the body in different ways, God nourishes our spirits in different ways.
Carbohydrates...these are meant for fast energy to perform the average daily tasks.
Vitamins and Minerals...meant to supply body systems and organs with necessary components for operating properly.
Proteins...for slower released amounts of energy meant to sustain longer periods of work.

For me, God's Carbohydrates tend to be people. I am energized quickly by people. I love my family, my friends and even people I don't know. If people are involved, I can be motivated to do just about anything.

God's Vitamins and Minerals in my life is my daily devotions. And honestly, this looks very different from day to day. For me it is the regular input of God's truth in my life. Most of my daily thought life is centered on the little areas God is pointing out to me that need more of Him. It can be from a scripture I've read, a speaker I love who challenges me or even from the lessons I pick up on from daily life.

God's Protein...this is the meat and sustaining power of my life. I have to put in some effort to get this in my diet. Carbs are easy...they are everywhere!!! Even vitamins and minerals can be taken fairly easily with daily discipline. But Protein takes preparation, thought and time. For me, to get God's "protein power", I set aside time for a more intimate encounter with His Presence. I gather my ingredients of worship and word and take my time to sit with Him. Those are the times that are the "Slow Releasing" kind of nourishment!!

In the natural we cannot thrive on one type of nourishment alone. You can't have a diet consisting of only carbohydrates or only protein. Our relationship with God is much the same. We need all types of spiritual nourishment.

Today, I am choosing to fast. If I am careful to look at my life right now, I can see I am in need of some serious direction and vision from God. I am so thankful that I do not have to "live on bread alone, but rather on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord." (Deuteronomy 8:3) I want some of the "Meat of God's Word" today.

In what different ways does God nourish your spirit?

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Thankful Thursday

It must be Spring.

I know this because two things happen to me every Spring. First, I always feel the need to go get a fresh new haircut. Second, I start having the desire to fire up the grill and BBQ for dinner every night.

It must be Spring, because today both of those things happened. I went and got myself a shorter, springy haircut and then came home and barbecued dinner.

Springtime gives me so many reasons to be thankful. Here are just a few:

  • Warm, sunny days.
  • Streets lined with trees that are in full bloom.
  • Watching things that appear to be dead start coming back to life again.
  • Tulips.
  • Warm, sunny days.
  • The renewed energy I feel when it is warm and sunny.
  • The sound of my grandchildren laughing and playing outdoors.
  • Daffodils.
  • Waking in the morning to the sound of birds singing.
  • Working in the yard.
  • Firing up the barbecue.
  • Warm, sunny days.

Oh yeah, and I'm also extra-thankful that I get to go see Beth Moore at the Living Proof Live conference this weekend.

What is it you're thankful for?

Monday, April 13, 2009

Coupons Anyone?

Best magazine and blog for finding deals and extra coupons every month.

Here's a testimonial from one of our moms:

"I wasn't a big coupon clipper until Lois (Ross) got me hooked last month. 
Before I would do it selectively and try my best to put items together with my coupons to save more $$$, but it never really seemed to work well as I was never as organized as I wanted to be. So, Lois taught me to organize (at the last Ladies cookout) and I will say that since I've started organizing my coupons, I"ve saved over $300 in less than three weeks...on things I would normally buy."

This magazine and blog is all about deals and the magazine has coupons for everyday items which you can use in the stores to save more $$$ on things you already buy.

Check it out here...

Sunday, April 12, 2009

He Is Risen!!!!

Then the angel spoke to the women. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead, just as he said would happen. Come, see where his body was lying. Matthew 28:5-6

We here at Mom2Mom Cafe pray that you all have an amazing day, rejoicing in our Risen Savior!! We pray that your day is blessed beyond measure.


Friday, April 10, 2009

Fruitful Fridays - Clam Chowder and Roux

Well...I did it! For the first time in my life I made CLAM CHOWDER! And I was able to eat it too!

My youngest daughter's teacher's favorite meal is Clam Chowder. Her birthday was this week and my daughter wanted to make her lunch. I was excited that my little girl was wanting to bless her teacher and I really wanted to honor her generosity...even if it meant making something for the first time, then giving it away! I told her teacher I'd give it a go and that the good news was, if she didn't like it, she wasn't going to be able to say that to a Sweet Little Kindergartener! ;-) (Luckily, I have a great relationship with this teacher and she laughed.)

I found a good recipe on AllRecipes.com. If you have never been to this site...you have to go! This is my "Go To" site for any and all recipes. Readers can submit recipes and then they are rated and receive reviews. The best luck I have is to find recipes with 4 or 5 star ratings and then I read as many reviews as I can to make adjustments to the recipes.

Here is the one I found for the Clam Chowder. In reading the reviews, you can rank the reviews by "the most helpful". For this recipe, the most helpful review modified the recipe by making a Roux instead of just adding the flour. I figured...seeing this was a first, why not add another first...I made a Roux, too! (hey, that rhymes!)

If you've never heard of this...
Roux (pronounced "roo" is a thickening agent for soups and sauces with roots dating back more than 300 years in French cuisine. It is made by cooking a flour and oil paste until the raw flavor of the flour cooks out and the roux has achieved the desired color, a properly cooked roux imparts silky-smooth body and a nutty flavor while thickening soups and sauces.
The AllRecipes site also had step-by-step instructions for Making a Roux. I know this had to have made a difference in my chowder. It was so thick and creamy. I am so thankful for the internet. How cool for me to want to do something new and be able to find instructions right at my fingertips!

Thanks for letting me share a "first" with you. Have any of you tried a new recipe lately and want to share it with us?

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Empty Tomb Biscuits

Today on the 217 campus, the moms and kids did a baking craft, making Empty Tomb Biscuits. Like the Resurrection Cookies in the Fruitful Friday post last week, these are a fun way to talk with children about the Resurrection of our Savior. Even the three year old that Robyn babysits had a great time with it. On the drive home she was explaining to Robyn all about the biscuit and the story of Jesus, although her Christmas and Easter stories must have been running together in her mind, because she was thinking that it was baby Jesus in the tomb. :)

Thank you to Aryn for doing the craft, and for sharing this fun recipe with the rest of us:

Empty Tomb Biscuits

These biscuits form a hollow center while baking, representing the empty tomb where Christ arose on Easter.

I can refrigerated buttermilk biscuits (like Grands)
¼ cup melted butter
1 bag large marshmallows
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Mix cinnamon and sugar together in a bowl.
Flatten each biscuit until it’s about 5 inches across.
Spread melted butter, cinnamon and sugar on the biscuit.
Place the marshmallow on the center of the biscuit, and then fold the sides around it, forming a “tomb”.
Place biscuit crease side down on a greased baking sheet.
Spread more butter, cinnamon and sugar on top of the biscuit.
Bake in preheated oven for 18-20 minutes, or until lightly browned.

Mad Deal Mondays - Free Slamwich at Denny's

Denny’s is doing it again!

Purchase a Grand Slam Breakfast between 6:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, April 8th, and you’ll get a new Grand Slamwich FREE!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Fruitful Friday - Resurrection Cookies

Easter is around the corner, and I thought I'd share a great kid friendly EASTER RECIPE!

We did this last year with our 8, almost 7 and 5 year old and it went over really well. I was working with the ingredients and Dad read the scriptures. And the bonus was that they didn't taste half bad....

To be made the evening before Easter.
You need:

1c. whole pecans
1 tsp. vinegar
3 egg whites
pinch salt
1c. sugar
zipper baggie
wooden spoon
scotch tape
Preheat oven to 300 BEFORE BEGINNING.

Place pecans in zipper baggie and let children beat them with the wooden spoon to break into small pieces.
Explain that after Jesus was arrested He was beaten by the Roman soldiers. Read John 19:1-3.

Let each child smell the vinegar. Put 1 tsp. vinegar into mixing bowl.
Explain that when Jesus was thirsty on the cross he was given vinegar to drink. Read John 19:28-30.

Add egg whites to vinegar. Eggs represent life.
Explain that Jesus gave His life to give us life. Read John 10:10-11.

Sprinkle a little salt into each child's hand. Let them taste it and brush the rest into the bowl.
Explain that this represents the salty tears shed by Jesus' followers, and the bitterness of our own sin.
Read Luke 23:27.

So far the ingredients are not very appetizing.

Add 1 c. sugar.
Explain that the sweetest part of the story is that Jesus died because He loves us. He wants us to know this and how to belong to Him. Read Ps. 34:8 and John 3:16.

Beat with a mixer on high speed for 12 to 15 minutes until stiff peaks are formed.
Explain that the color white represents the purity in God's eyes of those whose sins have been cleansed by Jesus. Read Isaiah 1:18 and John 3:1-3.

Fold in broken nuts. Drop by teaspoons onto wax paper covered cookie sheet.
Explain that each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus' body was laid. Read Matt. 27:57-60.

Put the cookie sheet in the oven, close the door and turn the oven OFF.

Give each child a piece of tape and seal the oven door.
Explain that Jesus' tomb was sealed. Read Matt.27:65-66.

Explain that they may feel sad to leave the cookies in the oven overnight Jesus' followers were in despair when the tomb was sealed. Read John 16:20 and 22.

On Easter morning, open the oven and give everyone a cookie.

Notice the cracked surface and take a bite. The cookies are hollow! On the first Easter Jesus' followers were amazed to find the tomb open and empty! Read Matt. 28:1-9

Thanks to Sunday School Network for the recipe I used.

If you try this recipe with your kids, or any others like this, let us know how it turned out!!!