Wednesday, May 28, 2008


If bread dough somehow makes its' way into your washer and also into your dryer, you will have sheets and pillowcases glued together. And, the bread dough can't be removed.

If you get distracted and forget to put the toothpaste away in the children's bathroom, you will return to find the mirror, sink, window, and toilet seat decorated with dried-on-tough-to-scrape-off-bubble-gum-scented toothpaste.

If you take your three small children, one large dog and one small dog on a walk, one of them is going to run away. And, if that "one of them" is the beloved favorite family pet, you will then have three crying, wailing children and a long chase that ensues.

If you read "Hansel and Gretel" before going to the grocery store and then hand out snacks to keep little hands and mouths busy through the store, eventually a grocery store employee will ask you to please put away the peanuts and raisins because you have left a trail six aisles behind you.

If your two year old tells people she has a baby in her tummy and that her father (she means "God-her Father") put it there, people will give you dirty looks.

If you teach your oldest child to use the telephone for emergency purposes, "emergency" will come to be defined in her mind as anything that crosses her mind as a reason to pick up said telephone, including calling her best friend to ask her what color socks she is wearing while you are taking a shower.

It's been an interesting week!

Thank You, Lord for even the interesting moments. Thank You for granting me both patience and a sense of humor, though I don't always recognize them instantly. Forgive me for the times I've sighed or been cross or rolled my eyes this week. Help me to appreciate the sweetness of wee ones underfoot and overhead and in my lap and under my skin. Help me to love them the way You do. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Two Lions

Yesterday, I stopped by our local gas station and let the girls each pick out a drink. They have some yummy 100% fruit juices (at ridiculous prices!) that we very occasionally treat them to. As we were unloading the van, Emma and Ruthie were having some sort of heated argument that resulted in tears for Ruthie. As the older two emerged from the van, I asked Ruthie why she was crying...

Ruthie: Emma's lying!
Emma: No I'm not, Ruthie! You just don't know as much about the Bible as I do!
Ruthie: Yes I do!
Mommy: Okay, Ruthie, what do you think Emma is lying about?
Ruthie: I said that Jesus is the lion in the Bible, but Emma said Satan is a lion, too. She's lying because Satan can't be the same thing as Jesus!
Mommy: (thinking...) Well, Ruthie, you are both right. You're right because Jesus and Satan can never be the same thing. Jesus is God and Satan was made by God. But, Emma is right, too. The Bible does describe both Jesus and Satan as lions.
Ruthie: Huh?
Mommy: Jesus is the King Lion. He is like the protector of the forest and of all the creatures in the forest. His job is to protect us and God describes Him as a lion because He is so mighty and powerful. Nothing can destroy Him. God also describes Satan as a lion but not as a protector lion. He is described as a sneaking, prowling lion, trying to steal and kill and destroy. That lion doesn't care about anything but himself and wants to hurt everyone. So, they are both lions but very, very different lions. God wants us to know which lion we should follow.
All three girls: The King Lion! Jesus!

We closed the van doors and turned to walk into the gas station. As I turned, the man who had been cleaning the parking lot was standing a few feet away with tears streaming down his face. He softly said, "Thank you. I really needed to hear that today. I needed to know they are both lions." Then he turned and walked away.

I was completely stunned. I don't know this man's story or anything about him other than that he works at the gas station near my home. But, God used an argument with my girls to remind him and teach us that He really is the King Lion, guarding us and protecting us. As we walked into the gas station, Ruthie said, "Do you think that man knows Jesus?"

Yes, honey, I do. I think he just needed to remember what Jesus' job really is.

Thank You, Lord. For juice at the gas station, for arguments that are about You and Your character, for allowing us to be used for Your purposes. Thank You for being such a mighty lion on our behalf...and for being so much more. In Jesus' name...Amen.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Emma's Blueberry Cream Cheese Pound Cake

Yesterday, Emma baked her first cake. She's been my sous chef several times, but yesterday we traded places. She did everything herself except grease the pan and take the cake out of the oven. It was so much more fun to watch her figure everything out!

Here she is adding the blueberries...

...and making sure everything is combined well...

...ready for the oven...

The finished product!!!

And, as you can see, the only thing that didn't work well was the cake releasing from the pan...and that was my job! The cake was delicious and Emma enjoyed serving everyone a slice after dinner. She even helped with the dishes!

All She Wants For Christmas...

is her two front teeth!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

My Redeemer Lives

We all have those moments, those days, weeks, months, even years, when we become aware that it is God carrying us through our struggles and difficulties. When it is His hands and feet working to inch us closer to eternity.

I had one of those days yesterday and found this AMAZING video of Team Hoyt. Every year, I love to watch the coverage of the Iron Man Triathalon in Hawaii. The stories of triumph are so amazing! This father and son team story is heart wrenching to watch, but is such a picture of God working inour lives. We are the son..unable to complete the race on our own. He is the Father, pushing on in the face of adversity.

Enjoy the video and let me know what you think!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Easy Recipes

Maybe I'll get back to posts with a bit more substance. I can't believe I only posted twice in April! When I'm pregnant, I tend to really focus on certain husband, my girls, our home. Blogging hasn't been a priority lately, but I've got a few posts rolling around in my head so eventually they will make their way here!

We've had some unexpected company and events over the last couple of months and I wanted to share with you (all three of you who are still reading my blog!) a couple of easy recipes that work great when time and resources are short. Hope they can bless another family!

Cheesy Chicken Noodle Casserole
1 bag wide egg noodles, cooked and drained
2 C cooked and cubed chicken breasts (or 2 cans of chicken)
2 cans mixed vegetables, drained
2 cans cream of chicken soup
2 C shredded co-jack (or your favorite) cheese
2 Tbsp milk

Grease a 9X13 pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients and mix well. It helps to add the noodles to the mixture hot as it helps melt the cheese. Pour casserole into greased pan. Spray a piece of aluminum foil with non-stick cooking spray and cover pan. Bake for 30 minutes, removing foil for last 10 minutes. Enjoy!

Sausage Breakfast Bake
8 pieces of bread (any kind--I use french bread and guess on the amount)
1 lb sausage (any kind--I like maple flavored) cooked and drained
2 C milk
4 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp dry mustard (optional)
2 C shredded cheese (I use co-jack)

Grease a 9X13 pan. Place bread in bottom of pan. Sprinkle sausage evenly over the top of bread. In a mixing bowl, whisk eggs, milk, salt, pepper and mustard together. Pour evenly over sausage and bread. Sprinkle cheese over top and cover with foil. Place in fridge overnight or at least 6 hours.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake for 25 minutes covered and 10 minutes uncovered. Enjoy!

Hot Chicken Sandwiches
This is embarrassingly easy, but a great dish to make if you want to share with another family or have lots of leftovers. The chicken is plain--so kids like it!--but can be dressed up with BBQ sauce, ketchup and the like.

2 pkgs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 cans chicken broth
1 sleeve saltines, crushed

Place chicken and broth in crock pot. Cook on high for 6 hours, low 8 hours. Shred with 2 forks. Add crushed saltines and mix well. Let sit at least 15 minutes so crackers soften well. Serve hot on buns with desired garnishes. Enjoy!