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Showing posts from August, 2012

Close Your Eyes and Tap Your Heels Together Three Times

Many years ago I read the following prose penned by an African pastor and was immediately convicted by the Holy Spirit. It embodies the life of the disciple I want to be for Christ and illustrates so clearly how wide the gap is between who I am and who I want to be: 

I’m a part of the fellowship of the unashamed. The die has been cast. I have stepped over the line. The decision has been made. I’m a disciple of His and I won’t look back, let up, slow down, back away, or be still.
My past is redeemed. My present makes sense. My future is secure. I’m done and finished with low living, sight walking, small planning, smooth knees, colorless dreams, tamed visions, mundane talking, cheap living, and dwarfed goals.
I no longer need preeminence, prosperity, position, promotions, plaudits, or popularity. I don’t have to be right, or first, or tops, or recognized, or praised, or rewarded. I live by faith, lean on His presence, walk by patience, lift by prayer, and labor by Holy Spirit …

Book Review: Captivating

This week during my daily commute I have been reading Captivating (Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman's Soul) by John and Stasi Eldredge. The book promises to reveal what it means to be a woman and how to live the life of a woman as God intended on a day to day basis.

The thesis of the work is a philosophy of gender reasoned as follows:
1. Gender is imprinted at the spiritual level on the soul and not just in our physical form and genes. 
According to the authors, this principle is suggested by the contextual language of the versus in Genesis describing creation. Specifically, the verse dictating that God made mankind, MALE AND FEMALE, in his image. The authors argue that based on this inclusive language, both men and women represent the spiritual image of God and so it follows both genders display/embody attributes of God at a spiritual level.

2. Women reflect the following attributes of God: romance, adventure, and beauty.
Using numerous scripture references, the authors do a good …

Kitchen Essentials: Herbs and Spices

The key to healthy, flavorful, and delicious cooking is having a variety of spices and herbs on hand at all times. Jonathan and I have put time and energy into building our spice and herb collection and it has paid off in spades. Rarely do we find a recipe (even the most exotic) that calls for a spice or herb we don’t have on hand. And we love delighting the palettes of our friends and family with seasonings they may not be familiar with. We prefer to stock all of our dried spices and herbs from Penzey’s, but many of those that we’ve listed below can be found at any grocery store. If there is a particular herb or spice you’re wondering about how you might use, I’d be happy to share some recipes if you send me an email with the seasoning in question. Herbs & Spices (A-H)
adobo
allspice, ground
almond extract
anise seed, whole
bangkok blend
basil
bay leaves
brady street cheese sprinkle
cajun seasoning
caraway seed
cardamon, ground
cayenne pepper, ground
celery flakes
celery seed, ground
chili piqu…

Kitchen Essentials: Hardware

Many friends have asked me to pontificate on the kitchen gadgets and hardware that I find essential in everyday cooking. I’ve been preparing meals for my family for 16 years, and did a fair bit of cooking for myself before that. And in all those years, I’ve never had the pleasure of a large kitchen, so keeping things pared down to the absolute essential has been a priority. I am confident that anyone stocking their kitchen for the first time (or replenishing supplies after many years) will find these items useful. If you think I’ve left something out, speak up (email me!) and let your petition be heard.  PrepHigh quality knife set – can not be overstated how important this is. Dull knives are the enemy. wooden paddles- used for stirring most everything on the stove. Cheap and easy to replace.cooking spatulas – 1 short nonstick, 1 long nonstick (for turning fish and crepes), 1 short metal.baking spatulas of various sizes for getting the last bits of batters and sauces out of pans, for …

Onion Pie

I made this recipe a couple of months ago and absolutely loved it. It came to me from a penpal in the Netherlands.5 onions2 T olive oil2 T butter1 clove garlic, minced3 t sage1 pie crust (use your favorite recipe)150 g goat cheesepepper and saltRoast onions in oil and butter. Add sage. Put the pie crust in a pie pan, sprinkle with goat cheese, salt, and pepper. Layer the onions atop the cheese. Bake 20 minutes at 200 degrees. Very good with a simple side salad for dinner.

Good Morning Starshine

Well after a month and a half of sharing one car in our family (hubby's car is in the shop till the end of Sept because a part we need is on backorder due to the SAAB bankruptcy), I am here to update you on the benefits of the arrangement. Yes, benefits. Can you believe you just read that? It didn't seem like it was going to provide any benefits at first and I spent the first week or two complaining and whining about the suffering I was forced to endure. But I've changed my tune and I'd like to sing it for you now.

1. I have always been a person lacking self-discipline who got up whenever I felt like it (i have flexible work hours).  This has caused problems for me because fitness regimens, breakfast schedules, making time to walk the dogs, and lunch making (to save $$) all depend on a reliable and consistent morning routine. And yet it's so hard for an undisciplined person to gain discipline unless it's imposed from the outside for a time (during which it even…