Monday, April 14, 2014

Hosanna, Hosanna {Palm Sunday Craft and Treat}

"A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,

“Hosanna to the Son of David!”
“Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!”
“Hosanna in the highest heaven!”

When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, “Who is this?” The crowds answered, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.” - Matthew 21:8-11

Hannah may be young but she is soaking up so much information at this age. I can see her learning and growing on a daily basis and I am just amazed. That is why we are starting young teaching our little lady about Jesus and the things of God.

Yesterday we taught her about Palm Sunday and Jesus' triumphant entry into Jerusalem. She loved when I traced around her little hands to make the "palm branches" and then waving it around in the air while I sang a kid song about Palm Sunday. She especially loved when I made treats for my AWANA girls. I think she thought they were for her! I did let her lick the frosting off the whisk. ;)


One of the verses that drives me as a parent is the one from Deuteronomy 6:7 that says, "You shall teach them [God's Words] diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up." It is our duty, no matter how young (or old for that matter), to teach our children God's truth. I hope and pray that she will someday come to know and love the Lord but until then I will continue to share and impress upon her how good He is to me and been in my life!


Quick and Easy Palm Sunday Cupcakes {No Recipe Required}

  
 I wanted to make a treat for my AWANA girls but I didn't have much time to do any serious baking. I bought some pre-made muffins/cupcakes at the supermarket and then whipped up a quick frosting to top them with. For the toppers I used the sugared "fruit" candy. Cut the green candies  length-wise and stick a toothpick in them. The cut sides are super sticky so they stick together well. Stick them together to resemble a palm branch. My toothpicks were really long for some reason so I made some little banners that said hosanna on them. They turned out pretty cute. I even gave the girls some chocolate gold coins to represent Jesus throwing out the money changers at the temple. :P Enjoy the rest of Passion Week and remembering our Savior and His great love for us!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

My {After Baby} Transformation

During my pregnancy with Hannah, we went to the ultrasound appointment expecting to hear that she was growing healthy and everything was going according to plan. It wasn't. My doctor said that our little bean was growing but she was measuring small for her gestational age. She advised me to stop working out and to eat as many calories as possible to get her big and healthy - and that is just what I did. Now I know that you gain weight while having a baby, to ensure a healthy living space for those 9 months in the womb and also to make her healthy as she grows, but I gained upwards of 60 to 65 lbs!


After having my bundle of joy, although I was happy to finally have her in my arms, I was suffering from postpartum depression. Add being overweight to the mix and I was not a happy camper. I saw a former co-worker post on her facebook page about an exercise program she was doing that was specifically geared towards moms. I checked it out and fell in love. I contacted the coach immediately and started a few weeks later in her next session. I completed two rounds, took several months off and now I'm back to complete two more sessions. I am down to the weight I was when I was the most fit I've ever been. But honestly, it's about more than the weight.

Neubody, showed me that I am capable and strong. I can achieve anything I put my mind to. I feel great! I love working out and taking care of myself. I love the positive impact it's had on my family. Hannah copies the workout moves that her Daddy and I do. It's so darn cute and it's wonderful to think that we are instilling in her good habits about taking care of the bodies God gave us so we can care for and serve others.


Along with the workouts in the program, I learned about how much nutrition plays into your overall health and weight lose. Our household already ate pretty clean because of Jeremy's food sensitivities but it has been revamped and is 99% clean of processed foods, except for the occasional items like packaged dijon mustard, although I did just find a homemade dijon recipe that I will be trying so we can get to 100% clean.

On our 4th wedding anniversary last summer, Jeremy and I got dressed up and went out to one of our favorite restaurants in the area. Afterwards we came home and had some amazing homemade raw key lime pie. You'll never guess what secret ingredient is in it that gives it it's creamy texture. Ready, it's - avocados! Go and try the recipe, pronto! It's so simple and oh so delicious. Who needs processed and sugar saturated desserts when God made natural sugars and treats that are WAY better, in my humble opinion! :)


*Chef's Note: We omitted the tapioca flour and substituted figs for the dates since Jeremy can't have them. It turned out amazing. Seriously, go try this now!*

Friday, March 21, 2014

Love in Action

I'm gonna kick off my return to blogging with a question that my husband and I have been discussing lately and that is: what does genuine Christian faith look like in the life of a believer? How does the Spirit work in him or her. It seemed to us that something seems missing in what we see in so much of the church today; including our own lives.

All too often I find myself living the christian lifestyle; going to church, dressing modestly, not watching or listening to inappropriate things, etc.. but not have a desire to further my relationship with God. I may look the part but in essence, I am behaving like an atheist. I hate that. I hate days when I am not seeking God or delving into His word for my spiritual food for the day. I want to love Him and desire Him all the days of my life but some days my sinful desires win and I choose to rely on my own strength and knowledge to make it through.


I came across this image online and it really made me think. Take away the Jesus stickers, clothes, jewelry, etc.. and would people be able to tell that you loved Jesus? What differentiates us from the rest of the world? The verses referenced were exactly what my husband and I had been looking for. That is the church. That is what genuine faith looks like.

Romans 12:9-21 Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. 10 Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. 11 Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically. 12 Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying. 13 When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them. Always be eager to practice hospitality. 14 Bless those who persecute you. Don’t curse them; pray that God will bless them. 15 Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep. 16 Live in harmony with each other. Don’t be too proud to enjoy the company of ordinary people. And don’t think you know it all! 17 Never pay back evil with more evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. 18 Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone. 19 Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say, “I will take revenge; I will pay them back,” says the Lord. 20 Instead, “If your enemies are hungry, feed them. If they are thirsty, give them something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals of shame on their heads.” 21 Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good.

I need to be reminded (many times) of gospel truths before they really begin to sink in. Dwelling on these passages for a few minutes each day really helps me to focus on what my objective is in this world. The chief end of man is to glorify God and with the help of the Holy Spirit, we are able to live out the words of this passage. I am choosing to rely on Him to help me have genuine faith and demonstrate love in action.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

I'm Back!

My goodness, it's been more than 2 years since I last blogged on here. And a lot has happened in the mean time!

Jeremy and I had a baby. She is a toddler now. She is the sweetest little girl. And sometimes she is not. She is teaching me about love and patience. God knows exactly what I need to learn to be more like Him. 

Since having my little bean, I am a SAHM. It is wonderful but like I mentioned above, it has it's challenges. I am back to blog (with what little time I have available) to share my mommy musings and about the One who helps me get through it all! 


                                                            Baby Bun on her first day of life ;)

Christmas 2014

Friday, January 13, 2012

Tebowing


I just gotta come out and say this: I love Tim Tebow! Not only is he an amazing athlete but he is so so so dang real. His faith comes natural to him. To some this is uncomfortable but this guy is living out his faith and is unashamed of his relationship with Jesus. It's AWESOME! I was driving home today when I heard on the radio that after a championship game where he had a bible verse on his face under the eye black, the very next day, John 3:16 was the most searched term on Google. 90 million people looked up the verse that is a summary of the gospel. 90 MILLION! I just had to praise God for this moment in time. Tebow has stood up and set an example for all of us. Praise God for wonderful role models, people who stand up for God now matter who's watching!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Thrifting for Baby

Twenty twelve is chugging along very nicely- by God's grace this is going to be an amazing year! One of the first major things we do is visit our sweet little niece. She was born back in November but she lives half-way across the state, past the mountain pass. We didn't want to end up getting stuck in the snow on our visit over so our trip was delayed. That is until now. Our winter has been very mild and snow is not a big issue over the pass anymore so we are planning on visiting her within the next few weeks. I already sent a fun care package with tons of goodies (handmade and some purchased) but now that we are coming in person, I want to have another gift for that sweet little girl! And isn't buying baby stuff so much more fun than anything else? Everything is so itty bitty and adorable. I just love it!

This weekend I went thrifting with my Mom and I stumbled upon some adorable onesies (and for just $0.69!) and this awesome toy that brings back so many memories from when I was a young'un. It'll be so much fun to see little baby Avery finally and shower her with love!

Saturday, December 31, 2011

{Our Top Ten}

This last year has been a doozy! Amazing things have happened to us and we feel so blessed. Here are our top ten highlights of 2011:

1. I read through the entire bible, cover to cover. It is my first time reading it all the way through as opposed to the select chapters I had before. It was amazing to get it finished up and I can't wait to read it again next year. It has really helped me to understand the Lord more and appreciate His majesty.

2. Jeremy had 19 articles published through American Thinker and he was also given his own editor to work with. It is so wonderful to see my man grow in his craft and continue to write amazing articles that point his audience to God's truths. Here's to more articles and opportunities in the coming year!

3. We found our new apartment- it was in the same city, but the rent is less and the place is nicer. Win-Win! It's amazing the little miracles God places in our path and how we found this place after searching for months and not finding anything as nice or that fit our price range. We definitely found our home sweet home.

4. This year has been rather interesting when it comes to my job. At the beginning of the year I was working with one company that soon merged with another company. The companies decided to split halfway through the year but I ended up staying at the later company. Then I received a promotion. Another miracle that God allowed to be placed in our lives. He is ever faithful!

5. In August we celebrated 2 years of marriage and 5 years together. My how the time flies. It's funny to reminisce on how we first met (Myspace- I know totally sketch huh?!) who we were as individuals back then and how God has changed us and redeemed our relationship. It is a true testament to His power and I praise Him every day for His blessings in our lives and marriage.

6. We're debt freeeeeeeeeeeeeee!! That was our Dave Ramsey freedom yell :) It took us a little over 3 years to get out of more than $40,000 of debt. Just like Dave always says, "You live like no one else so later you can live like no one else." We slowly but surely got our debt snowball going and finished it off this year when we paid off my car. We are no longer a slave to the lender!

7. Another year of AWANA started this year. It is like any other year except at a recent lesson I taught I was delighted to find out the girls were actually learning. I mean, you never know how much information the kids are retaining when they are all hyped up for the many activities in AWANA. I am getting through to them and it is a blessing to know that I am helping grow those little girls into followers of Christ.

8. 2011 brought some new friends into our lives (Liz from holy yoga and Michael and Deirdre from church). We are enjoying the many people God has placed into our lives - the new and old friends who bring such joy to our lives.

9. Each and every year my prayer is that I grow closer to Christ and this year I have definitely felt the sense of that. I have come to really trust Him, with everything. Sometimes I tend to worry about things, i.e. work, money, family, etc... but recently I just said "God, it's yours. Here are my worries. I am leaving them with you and trusting you to help me through." It is a wonderful thing to surrender all to Him!

10. And finally- one highlight of this year is what is to come. We know 2012 has lots of surprises in store and we fully trust God to see us through.

Happy New Years dear readers, though you may be few. May God richly bless you and your family in the coming year!