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Sunday, January 24, 2010

A Few More Pictures

Thank You Sophie!

My dear friend Sophie came over and shot some pictures of Sam the other day, playing inside our house. She has an amazing eye and I thought they turned out great. Here are a few of my favorites, and yes, that is a fruit snack balanced on Sam's nose...just like a puppy.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Great With Child

Grace sent me this fantastic, thoughtful book by Debra Rienstra, I'd highly recommend it to any woman, but especially so if you are pregnant right now. I am too incoherent to even summarize this beautiful book right now, but wanted to share a quote out of her chapter on "Joying in the Body" that struck me.

She is talking about belonging to Jesus Christ, body and soul, and how even though the idea strikes many people as repulsive, reeking of ownership or control, it's actually filled with freedom:

"If God cares for my body as well as my soul, then I can surrender its pain and failure to the One who made it: like taking a damaged violin back to one who carefully carved and sanded its every curve and plane."

I love this idea, and it would have been a helpful picture to hang on to through the hormonal ups and downs of puberty. Belonging to Him, being cared for by Him, and knowing that He loves me as I am is a huge self image boost, don't you think?

I'll try and remember that the next time I view my huge, white belly in the mirror. :)

Monday, January 18, 2010

French Breakfast Muffins

This is one of those recipes you may or may not thank me for. It goes way back in my family, appearing at many a bridal or baby shower, because they can be made entirely ahead, frozen and then defrosted the morning of with no discernible difference.

They are also addictivly delicious, being rolled in butter and cinnamon sugar and tasting much like a delicious little donut. Don't ask me why they are called French, or Breakfast, I just know that they are my FAVORITE MUFFIN. That's right, I said it. My favorite, out of all the muffin recipes I've posted.

2/3 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
3 cups flour
3 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 cup milk

-Approximately 1 cup cinnamon sugar, I like mine nice and dark with good cinnamon
-a stick (or probably two, don't hate me!) of melted butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 4 dozen mini muffin tins (These can absolutely be made with normal size tins, I just like them better small, the ratio of cinnamon goodness to cake is higher. It does take longer though to roll all the little ones...) In a mixer, beat butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs and mix well. In a small bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg. Add dry ingredients to butter mixture, alternating with milk. Start and end with the dry ingredients, mixing on low just until combined.

Fill muffin tins 2/3's full (as if that's possible in a mini tin, good luck) and bake 15-20 min, or until toothpick comes out clean. These muffins won't really brown, so don't look for color on them.

When cool, remove from tins and roll first in melted butter, then cinnamon sugar. At this point they can be frozen or eaten or refrigerated. I even like them cold out of the fridge.

Keeping a Short List

I've been nesting lately. Staying busy with needless, out-of-control home projects, my brain distracts so easily I feel like a hamster or some other sort of small rodent.

There is this urgency within me to keep up with my chores/bills/grocery shopping/cooking/laundry/communicating etc. because who knows when the baby is coming! God forbid she gets here when there are two pairs of dirty undershirts in the laundry basket and some dishtowels un-ironed! Or that the pillow protectors didn't get washed! Or that we didn't have SEVEN packages of Dole raisins in storage (Sam's favorite and once you've tried them you'll never go back to any other type), OR that the family room paint didn't get touched up! OR that I didn't get 4 dozen mini french breakfast muffins baked and frozen for those drop in guests to munch on...devastation!

Anyways, I was ironing two handkerchiefs (don't even ask, might have been a deal breaker if I'd known Scott used them pre-marriage) and four linen napkins from a dinner on Thursday, thinking over this urgency that I feel to GET. THINGS. DONE. To not leave whatever piling up around me because goodness knows I won't feel like doing much of anything once this little nugget arrives. It crossed my mind that this is what God wants for us, too.

To keep a short list of accounts, both with Him and with those around us. It was a good reminder to me about making sure that I'm talking to God, confessing and praising Him throughout my day. Not letting things between He and I build up around me, sitting forgotten and abandoned.

Anyways, just a random thought from a very pregnant, distractible me. Time to go eat something.


All these little Cowboy fans were letdown last night big time. I think Sam (over on the far right) is over it by now. His daddy, on the other hand, is not.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

A Hobby Turned Obsession

So we visited Best Buy over Christmas break, along with 3 million other people. I'd forgotten about the music room in the back right hand corner of our neighborhood store, it ended up being a pinnacle experience for my 2 and 1/2 year old. Filled with drums, cymbals, guitars and keyboards, he spent 45 minutes glued to a stool, playing one electronic kit after another.

45 minutes later, we had to literally PRY him away, kicking and screaming, with promises that we'll "come back to play the booms, buddy!"

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Happy Birthday to Jesus

First Present on Christmas Morning!

Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake

Ok, I realize it's been almost FOUR months since I've last posted. Is anyone still reading? Probably not. But, I made this coffeecake this morning for Bible Study and there were requests for the recipe. It's just too good not to share. The only downside is I don't think it's the type of thing you could make a day in advance. No idea where it came from, found it in my box and took a chance.

Apple Spice Coffee Cake
1 & 3/4 cup flour
1 & 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
3 tart apples, peeled and chopped (I used Braeburn)
2 TBs. lemon juice
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 stick of butter, softened
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 & 1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
Glaze: 3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 TB. skim milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla
pinch of salt, to taste
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, if using a glass pan 325. Grease either a 9 inch springform pan or square pan. If you double the recipe it'll fill a 10X15 inch pan. Combine the dry ingredients in a small bowl. Toss the apples in another bowl with lemon juice, cinnamon and brown sugar. In a mixer, beat butter, sugar, and cream cheese until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and eggs. Gently mix in dry ingredients. Fold in apples. Bake 60-70 minutes, until top is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Whisk the glaze ingredients together and drizzle over top.