Saturday, October 23, 2010

I'd Rather Have Jesus ~ Then Sings My Soul Saturday




I just watched this video of the testimony of Kirk Cameron.......



.....What an awesome testimony from someone who had everything that the world would say gives happiness and fulfillment and found that Christ gives so much more.  It immediately brought to my mind this hymn......

I’d Rather Have Jesus

I’d rather have Jesus than silver or gold;
I’d rather be His than have riches untold;
I’d rather have Jesus than houses or lands,
I’d rather be led by His nail pierced hand.

Than to be a king of a vast domain
Or be held in sin’s dread sway,
I’d rather have Jesus than anything
This world affords today.

I’d rather have Jesus than men’s applause;
I’d rather be faithful to His dear cause;
I’d rather have Jesus than world-wide fame,
I’d rather be true to His holy name.

He’s fairer than lilies of rarest bloom;
He’s sweeter than honey from out of the comb;
He’s all that my hungering spirit needs,
I’d rather have Jesus and let Him lead.


Sharing a beautiful version by Crystal Lewis......




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 Matthew 16:24-26 .... “Then Jesus said to his disciples, ‘If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it. What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?’” I’d rather have Jesus than silver or gold. . .
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Philippians 1:21 .... “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” I’d rather have Jesus and let Him lead. . .
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Philippians 3:8 ....“What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ.” I’d rather have Jesus than world-wide fame, I’d rather be true to His holy name. . .

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For more Then Sings My Soul Saturdays, visit Signs, Miracles and Wonders.  : )

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Friday, October 15, 2010

Cinnamon Rolls ~ Another Requested Recipe : )



Ever since this post, I've had requests for the recipe for the pictured cinnamon rolls that I teased you with, but because I am old and forgetful I kept.....well, forgetting!  I was going to post a healthy recipe this week, but I recently teased my Facebook friends with another picture of my cinnamon rolls  resulting in a few more requests & reminding me that I was supposed to post this recipe weeks ago....oops!  Better late than never (I've been saying that way too often lately) ~ ~ they're worth waiting for, anyway!  ; )



These are made with freshly ground whole grain flour, but you can make them with all-purpose as well.  Just substitute all-purpose for the wheat (you should need a little less of all-purpose and omit the gluten, lecithin or dough enhancer).


Special Cinnamon Rolls


Ingredients :


2 cups water
1/3 cup oil
1/2 cup honey (white sugar may be substituted)
1 tablespoon salt
4 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
7 - 7 1/2 cups freshly milled white wheat flour
1 (3 1/2 ounce) package vanilla instant pudding mix
1 1/2 tablespoons dough enhancer or 1 1/2 tablespoons lecithin powder
1 1/2 tablespoons gluten
1 cup raisins (opt.)

Filling:

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar, packed (white sugar may be substituted)
2 Tbsp. ground cinnamon

Glaze:
 
1 cup confectioners' sugar
1 -2 tablespoon milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


Directions:

Combine water, oil, honey and salt in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for approximately 2 1/2 minutes. (Temp should be between 130 - 135°F) If you do not have a thermometer, it is easy to get it too hot. and it will kill your yeast. Microwaves can also vary greatly in how fast they heat. Adjust as necessary.

In mixing bowl, combine 3 cups of flour, dough enhacer or lecithin, gluten, yeast and raisins; mix together. Add liquid ingredients and mix until well blended. Continue to mix adding the flour 1/2 cup at a time. When the dough pulls away from the side of the bowl enough flour has been added. Allow to knead 8-10 minutes, or until the dough forms a smooth ball .

Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide in half.  Roll each half into a 12-in. x 8-in.rectangle; spread with butter. Combine filling ingredients; spread over dough. Roll up from long side;seal seam. Slice each roll into 12 rolls; place cut side down in two greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking pans. Cover and let rise until nearly doubled, 45 minutes.

Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Combine glaze ingredients; drizzle over rolls. Cool in pans on wire racks.

Yield: 2 dozen.

*Note: One package of yeast is about 2-1/2 teaspoons of yeast.



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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Beatitudes (for Mothers), Week 2 ~ Mustard Seed Planting

 It's Wednesday!!  Linking up once again with Mom's Mustard Seeds for Mustard Seed Planting, a weekly meme where we link up and encourage one another to memorize and apply God's word in our hearts and lives!

Last week was quite the humdinger and with not feeling well combined with medication making my brain quite fuzzy,  I'm still working on the last scripture I posted, The Beatitudes.  Lately, I find that I greatly need the encouragement and hope found in Matthew 5:3-11.....


Once again, I'm also going to borrow from Glenda Malmin's devotional book for moms, "The Journey of a Mother's Heart" ~ Lessons on motherhood from the life of Mary.


She beautifully paraphrases the Beatitudes to put the blessings of motherhood into perspective:

A Mother's Beatitudes

  • Blessed is the mother whose children freely laugh, play and pray, for hers is the kingdom of heaven on earth.
  • Blessed is the mother who cries when she needs to but does not lack faith, for she will be comforted
  • Blessed is the mother who has a gentle disposition in the midst of the fluctuating emotions of her children, for she will inherit their hearts.
  • Blessed is the mother who hungers for a closer walk with God, for she will be nourished and sustained.
  • Blessed is the mother who is merciful in moments of contradiction, for she will receive mercy in the days that lie ahead.
  • Blessed is the mother who is pure in heart and in spirit, for she will see God and the future in the eyes of her children.
  • Blessed is the mother who is a peacemaker in times of storm, for she will be called trustworthy and true.
  • Blessed is the mother who is disheartened in the journey, for there is hope and a future for her.
  • Blessed is the mother who alone can see her child's potential, for God Himself will be her rear guard.
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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Sweet Little Backpack.....and Sweet Little Ornaments ~ It's Crafty Tuesday!


How ♥Sweet♥ is this little backpack??  It's so cute.....and coming soon to my Etsy shop (after I take some better photos....was playing around with a backdrop and I'm not very happy with these....posting anyway for Crafty Tuesday)!  There's room at the top for a name or initials to be mongrammed.  : )

It measures approx. 10"x12"x4"....perfect size for a sweet little preschooler ~ or for a teen/adult for everyday use.  My daughter has already requested one for her in the fabric of her choice and I plan to make one for myself......can't wait to use it on field trips/day trips and have my hands free!!

Features adjustable straps so that whether it's for a young little sweetie or a more mature young lady (like ~ ahem ~ myself), it's sure to fit!!  Also features one outer pocket, one large inner pocket and one small inner side pocket (perfect size for a cell phone)!




I wasn't able to post last week, but had planned to show off these cute little ornaments I made for my group of girls in our Middle School Choir at church.  We had a "Christmas in October" theme night to help us get in the spirit of learning the music this year for our Christmas concert and were asked to bring a small gift for our ♥sweet♥ girls........we also had festive cookies and hot chocolate!!

I needed something cute on a budget, so set out to visit my favorite craft store, Hobby Lobby.  I purchased a box of 12 craft ornaments (at 40% off), some acrylic craft paint and a spool of ribbon with  ♫ ♪ music notes ♪ ♫ on it (at 50% off, so I actually ended up buying 3 because it was so cute....but only used 1 for this project) ~ how perfect!  I think I ended up spending less than $1.00 a piece and they turned out adorable!!



My son had a new Paint-By-Number kit to work on, so we spread out all our paints and brushes and set to work!  In no time at all, I had the 8 gifts I needed......the pics don't do them justice ~ they were super cute!!





My daughter came home later, saw all the mess & was appalled that she missed Crafty Hour!  I guess we'll have to do it again soon.....Christmas is just around the corner and all those teacher appreciation gifts add up! ; )


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And whatsoever ye do, in word or in deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. ~ Colossians 3:17

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Linking up today with Nicole at My Mad World for Crafty Tuesday!!  If you're crafty, too.....link up and join in on the creativity!!




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Monday, October 11, 2010

Multitude Monday: 1000 Gifts 21-30

holy experience


21.  Two almost pain-free days in a row : )

22.  Sleep, bless-ed sleep ~ ~ a 2 hr. Sunday nap followed by a 10 hr. night's sleep  (This is unheard of for me.....I reckon I was tired!)

23.  Sweet evidences of  a true friendship

24.  A Boys-Only camping trip  : )

25.  Leftovers for dinner on Sunday nights, meaning Mom doesn't cook  : )

26.  Toy animals perched precariously on top of my computer screen, reminding me that someone was thinking of me  ♥

27.  Coffee breaks!!

28.  Little boys who adore their Mom.....for a little while longer, anyway  ; )  ♥

29.  a 12 yr. old girl with braids in her hair ♥

30.  Home School Field Trips



(Pics may be enlarged by clicking on them)




I ♥ Dolphins!!!  When I was my children's ages, I was convinced that I was going to have a huge-mongous salt water pool in my back yard so that I could have a pet dolphin.  I was also going to have pink flamingos in my back yard......and I'm not talking about the plastic ones.  ; )


In the general admission area (above), the dolphins were free to do as they wish while onlookers (us) watched.......they wanted to PLAY!!!  They would throw the balls (basketballs/footballs) that were in their tanks out to the kids....the kids would toss them back......and on and on it went ~ ~ so cute & fun!

We also got to pet a dolphin ~ not like at places like Sea World, where there's tons of dolphins crammed into one tank and you pet them as they pass by.  A trainer split our group up into smaller groups of five or more, we went to a specified area and he brought a dolphin up to us.  We were able to pet her (we met Pebbles!), feed her, give her some signals to which she responded, and the trainer talked about different parts of the dolphin's anatomy and gave lots of other interesting facts such as info on her diet and distinguishing characteristics between the different dolphins.  We'll be getting a CD with pics of our personal encounter later!


We also had a very fun and informative classroom experience....we had such a fun day!!
Now, I want to swim with them...... : )



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Saturday, October 2, 2010

"What Love Really Means" by JJ Heller ~ Then Sings My Soul Saturday



I heard this song by JJ Heller on the way home from running an errand last night and although I'm supposed to be resting my voice, I found myself singing along.  I just love her voice.....there's something about it.......sweet & pure, somewhat folksy, honest and earthy.  I love the fact that she's an independent artist and the music she writes is always so uplifting.  I even found her blog while searching for her site.....The Lovely Little Things, which only makes me like her more ~ she's a crafty mama just like me!  ; )


(Mute the auto music player at the bottom of the page to hear the song.)


Who else can love us the way HE can......the very one who created us???

"For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb"...Psalm 139:13

"I will praise you; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are your works; and that my soul knows right well......"Psalm 139:14

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What a beautiful and glorious day it will be when we experience the fulfillment of our deepest heart's longing to be with the ONE who made us, who knows us intimately....our every action, every thought....and loves us still ~ with an all-cosuming perfect love that surpasses all others.

"O LORD, you have searched me and you know me.
You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.
You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.
Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD.
You hem me in—behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.".....Psalm 139:1-6
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As I was reading Psalm 139: 1-6, I immediately recalled another song about the initmate way that God knows us.....I can't remember the last time I heard it but I remember every word...."He Knows My Name" written by Tommy Walker....sung in this video by the Maranatha Singers..... 
 



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Until the day when I'll see Him face to face, I will rest secure in His promises for my future and in the peace and knowledge that He knows MY name......and I know HIS.

"Because he loves me," says the LORD, "I will rescue him;
I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.
 He will call upon me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble,  I will deliver him and honor him.
 With long life will I satisfy him and show him my salvation."....Psalm 91: 14-16

For more Then Sings My Soul Saturdays, visit Signs, Miracles and Wonders.  : )




Friday, October 1, 2010

Sweet Diva's Birthday Party Cake.....Recipe By Request


Posting this recipe by request of a friend......if you've ever been to one of our birthday parties (well....except for Jacob ~ he's a boy after my own ♥chocolate-loving♥ heart) , you've most likely enjoyed a version of this cake.  Guaranteed to bring rave reviews and happy party-goers!

Warning:  There is nothing healthy about it.  But it is good!  And.....it IS for a special occasion, after all!  ; )


Take It Easy Yellow Cake

Ingredients :

2 cups flour
1 1/3 cups sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 eggs

Directions:

Heat oven to 350*.

Mix dry ingredients in large bowl.  Add shortening, milk and vanilla.  Beat on med for 2 minutes. Add eggs and beat for 30 seconds more.

Bake in greased 13x9 pan for 35 minutes, or until pick comes out clean. 


Creamy Cake Filling:

Ingredients :

1 (3 1/2 ounce) boxes instant vanilla pudding or 1 (3 1/2 ounce) boxes chocolate instant pudding
3/4 cup whole milk
1/2 pint heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Mix all ingredients together until thick. Place in refrigerator until it sets. Spread filling on cake & layer. *Note, cake MUST be completely cooled*.


Wilton Extra Special Buttercream Icing

Take note: this makes a lot....which I usually need because we tend to have big parties where entire families stay, so I need to make a big cake and need all this frosting!  You might want to halve the recipe.

Ingredients:

2 cups solid vegetable shortening
8 cups (2 lbs.) confectioners' sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1-2 teaspoons clear vanilla extract or your favorite flavoring (I use 1 tsp. vanilla + 1 tsp. almond)
6-8 ounces whipping cream

Makes: About 7 1/2 cups.


Instructions:

Cream shortening until fluffy. Add sugar and continue creaming until well-blended. Add salt, flavoring and whipping cream; blend on low speed until moistened. Beat at high speed until icing is fluffy.

Extra-Special Buttercream icing needs to be refrigerated, both after it is made and when it is placed on a cupcake. It will keep 3-5 days in the refrigerator.

*You may substitute 1 cup butter or margarine plus 1 cup solid vegetable shortening to achieve a more buttery taste.


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