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Showing posts from December, 2013

Gettin' Crafty - A Project For My Husband

I had been working on a secret project for Bill for a few weeks leading up to Christmas, and it makes me really happy to share it now (and I will post another photo of the art work hanging over our bed).  I decided to make a "headboard" out of a palette and some hearts our wedding party held in our wedding photos (pictured above).  I included the entire collage from a previous blog post, because this project will always remind me of our wedding day, which was hands down the best day of my life, and these photos really capture my heart.  Sigh… I still swoon thinking about it.  This project made me feel like I was preserving our day forever :) I borrowed the materials necessary (paint can opener, some left over stain from a previous project, and a drop cloth) from my father in law and purchased wood glue and a paint brush and got to work.  Honestly, it was SUCH a simple project, because I already had the hearts made from our wedding!  It was just about staining the woo

List Love - All I Got For Christmas

1. Facetime for my Sister's Engagement - The fact that I was able to be present for a moment that changed my sister, Faith's life was incredible.  I felt so connected to it I started crying and couldn't believe it really felt like I was able to be there.  Her boyfriend, now Fiance, Josh got down on one knee and said the sweetest things to his girl, and for just a moment all was still in a house generally full of movement.  He really loves my little sister, and to see her say yes to the man who holds her heart was all I really needed for Christmas. 2. Facetime With My Family Christmas Morning - Bill and I woke up at 5:30 am on Christmas morning to open gifts together then at 6:15 am we talked to my twin brother, his wife and their sweet daughter in Pittsburgh and at 6:30 am we facetimed with my parents, younger brother, two younger sisters, and my sister's fiance and his entire family.  My heart was full by 6:40 am Christmas morning, without even considering t

Food I Ate Friday - Gingerbread Goodness

I've never made Gingerbread men before, so when Bill told me he used to always make them with his parents and that he wanted to bring the tradition back, suffice it to say that I was really excited.  We followed a recipe Bill's mom had in a cookie cook book she uses every Christmas, and refrigerated the dough overnight.  The anticipation was killing me. There is something about the smell of Gingerbread that makes me feel all warm and cozy inside, and it filled the house with the smells of the holidays.  Baking in general warms up the house and fills it with excitement.  We put all the cookies on the kitchen table and filled pastry bags with icing and started creating our little men.  Most of them were silly, and by no means are we professionals, but they were absolutely adorable.  Everytime we completed one we showed the group and shared our triumphs and defeats. Not only did they turn out great, but we had a really lovely time.  We laughed and drank coffee and c

Be Encouraged - God Overcoming My Struggle With Weight

Self-Image.   What a loaded phrase.   It has a lot of debate, and I truly hope none of these words offend anyone, but I am realizing more and more that all women struggle with their body, and I want to dive into the why today.  With such a sensitive subject, I want to be sure we all understand, I believe any struggle with weight is valid and there is more going on that just the surface shows. It pains me when women can't see their beauty.  It pains me when beautiful Christian women complain about their stretch marks or hips or anything they view as imperfect.  It hurts my heart to watch women starve themselves over a few pounds.  I hate seeing women obsess over the way they look.  I hate seeing women who have had work done to themselves to make themselves feel more beautiful.  To me, they aren't getting God's intentions.   He didn't curse you with a flabby stomach or straight hair or big feet or small boobs.  He created you to be unique, he did not want us

A Penny For Your Thoughts- Holiday Focus

I think it's assumed when I stop blogging I am too busy, however lately I do not feel that has been keeping me from here.  I have lovely things to say about the holidays and how I have been swept up in them in different ways this year, but mostly I have been spending time with friends, family and my dear sweet husband.  As always, I am counting my blessings and remembering how much I have to be grateful for, but even more so I am realizing that I literally want for nothing.  When people ask what I want for Christmas, there is nothing I need.  Sure I have a list, but if I got nothing on it, I would be fine.  How amazingly blessed am I?  It makes me want to give away a bunch of my stuff, which to some may sound awful, but to me makes me feel like God has given me more than I could have ever imagined :) I love the holidays for the old school reasons.  Being around family and friends, sharing meals and conversation, carols celebrating Jesus, baking, hand written cards and beautifu

Food I Ate Fridays - Pumpkin Trifle

Ingredients 2-3 cups of leftover spice cake, muffins, or gingerbread (I used spice cake) 1 16 ounce can pumpkin puree 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice 2 1/2 cups cold milk 4 (3.4 ounce) packages instant butterscotch pudding mix 2 cups whipped cream Directions 1) Set aside 1/4 cup of cake crumbs for top. Divide remaining crumbs into four portions; sprinkle one portion into the bottom of a trifle bowl or 3-qt. serving bowl.  2) In a large mixing bowl, combine pumpkin, spices, milk and pudding mixes; mix until smooth. Spoon half into the serving bowl.  3) Sprinkle with a second portion of crumbs.  4) Whip cream until stiff; spoon half into bowl.  5) Sprinkle with a third portion of crumbs. Top with the remaining pumpkin mixture, then last portion of crumbs and remaining whipped cream.  6) Sprinkle the reserved crumbs on top, around the edge of the bowl. Place

Food I Ate Fridays - Sister Baking Day Featuring Kringala

Last Friday, my sister Faith and I spent the day baking together and it was simply lovely.  We woke up early, had french press coffee with peppermint mocha creamer, and just sunk into our first holiday celebration day.  In comfy pajama pants and messy buns on top of our heads, we baked 5 dozen chocolate chip cookies, completed a tray of peppermint bark and made a batch of these little beauties pictured above called Kringala.  Kringala hold a dear place in our hearts, and they taste just like childhood to us.  When we were really young, we used to visit an elderly woman, affectionatly referred to as Mrs. Z (her last name was Zebawa), and she always welcomed us with a basket of warm Kringala fresh from the oven.  We spent hours at her home, which I remember as quite an adventure, despite it's size and layout.   She had an assortment of interesting items: vases she had collected, unique napkin rings, paint brushes, and colorful tapestries; and she loved having us there.  I