Talking about home, children, parenting, homeschooling, recipes, faith and much more. Hope you'll join me!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Chocolate Recipes and Coffee Recipes - Yum!

Who doesn't love chocolate?  I know I do!  And I must confess to truly enjoying a cup of coffee too.  I am especially fond of the flavored coffees available now too, but do not like paying $4 to $5 for the privilege of drinking one!  I'm always looking for inexpensive ways to enjoy my flavored coffee and stay within my budget.  

Perhaps you'll find these recipes to be a help to your budget too.  

I've been very busy working on my website, Chocolate and Coffee Recipes.  I've added several new recipes over the last few days that I'd love to share with you.  I'd love to know if you try any of them - please leave me a comment or contact me through my blog!

Chocolate Recipes


Coffee Recipes

And, if you've ever wondered about which baking cocoa you should use for a recipe, I hope you'll check out my easy tip for remembering which one is best.

All my best to you today!


Friday, February 18, 2011

No Difference...

So Julie (11-year-old daughter) and I head out to the grocery last night.  Heather had a sore throat all day, so she happily stayed home with Daddy to snuggle in the recliner and go over her Awana verses. 

Julie and I are in the van, just approaching Meijer when we had this short conversation...

Me:  Julie, I didn't put on any makeup other than mascara tonight...

Julie:  It's okay Mommy, I don't mind...

Me:  Well, I'm just letting you know I didn't get all "done up" to come to the grocery...

Julie:  It's really ok  Mommy.  There's no difference at all when you don't wear makeup - really, I don't notice at all!

Me:  Oh, really?

Julie:  Really Mommy, I don't.

Me:  (under my breath)  Oh boy...

Of course I'm thinking, great, I look this bad all the time even when I try??

Then the next thought...knowing our Julie the way I do, she wasn't being mean when she said that to me.  She was trying to be complimentary.  In her mind, Mommy looks beautiful no matter what (at least that is what she has told me many times).  Hmmm...I wish I had her perspective

I thought more about that conversation through the evening hours and it occurred to me that I need to present my best self when I can, but I also know that there will be times when that just doesn't happen.  And...that's ok.  My daughters need to know that it's ok if you don't dress to the nines and put on your best outfit just to go to the grocery store.  I never want my girls to think they are "less" of a person just because they chose to put their hair up in a ponytail and skip the makeup.  (No, they're not wearing makeup yet!) 

I want them to see what I see...what the Lord sees...when they look into the mirror.  That's going to be tough for me to teach them given that I struggle mightily with what I see in the mirror each day.  But, it's my heart that they see themselves as beautiful, talented, compassionate, loving people and I'm committed to helping them realize that through God's Word and through our words. 

The Lord has been 'talking' to me through the Bible study I'm in now.  It deals with the state of the heart.  My goodness, I knew I needed a billboard, but this study really is showing me how much I need to allow the Lord into my heart of hearts.  My girls and their heart character are part of what He is showing me too.  I am trying to listen!

Enough rambling for today....

All my best to you,

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

A 'Lil of This and A 'Lil of That & A Recipe

Greetings from ice and snow covered Ohio!  We've been experiencing one of the worst snow storms since the 1950s - at least that's what the morning news folks said today.  I know we are not getting anything compared to Chicago!  Sure hope those folks were prepared and are staying safe.

It's been a while since I've written, so I thought I'd just share a few things that are going on here for us as of late.  Just a 'lil of this and a 'lil of that...

One of the biggest changes we made happened just today.  We made some changes as to the direction of education for our oldest daughter.  We'll see how it works out.  We've needed to make a change of sorts for a bit, and we hope this will be the answer.  If not, we will look at something else.

I started a Bible study a few weeks ago.  I haven't participated in a Bible study where a bunch of gals meet for a very long time.  I was sitting in service one of the weeks they announced it (the deadline to sign up was that Sunday) and I felt the weight of the Holy Spirit on my shoulders I walked back and signed up!  I have learned enough in my Christian walk to know that if I don't listen to Him, I am going to miss out on something He has for me.  I'm excited about the study - it's Beth Moore's study called David:  Seeking a Heart Like His.  I've only been to the introduction meeting, but it was great!  I've never been through a Beth Moore study before, so this should prove to be interesting.  I feel in my heart that the Lord is going to do something great in me through the study.  Between you, me, and the Lord, I'm a bit scared!  It's not easy allowing the Lord to chip away at the walls of your least it isn't for me!  And yet, I am anticipating, with excitement along with a bit of fear, what He will do in these next weeks.  I'll let you know how it goes.

We've discovered Boboli pizza crusts - yum!  I know they aren't the healthiest in the world, but I figure they're at least marginally better than the ones we buy from our local pizza place.  They're really quite good with cheese, pepperoni, and some veggies!

For those of you who don't know, I was adopted when I was 10 days old.  I lived a blessed life with my parents and brother and love them very much!  About 7 years ago, the Lord allowed my birth mom and family to locate me.  I have been blessed ever since with their love and friendship in my life!  There's a lot more to that story, but that will have to wait until another time. But, that leads in to what happened over the weekend.

I was chatting with my (birth) Mom, Chris, and she I were discussing how interesting it would have been for me to meet my paternal grandmother (mother of my birth father).  The little I knew about my grandmother was that she was from England and had never lost her beautiful accent.  She had a sweet spirit and Chris said she always had a good relationship with her.  As I ended the conversation and got off of the phone with Mom, I decided to see if I could find her online.  What I found was her obituary...and surprisingly (to me) it made me somewhat sad.  She was a beautiful woman with classic tastes.  I would have loved talking to her I think!  Her obituary can be found here:  Tribute to Mrs. Joan Ada Anzelmo.  My husband says he sees the resemblance when he looks at her eyes.  Do you see any resemblance? 

I share this because I feel it's a gift from God to me.  He obviously saw fit for me to find her online and have yet another piece of my history puzzle put in place for me.  The doors to that side of the family have consistently been closed, so I am convinced that the Lord is protecting me from something.  For whatever reason, He has not allowed any of those relationships to enter into my life.  I am resting in that and joyful that the Lord would give me this glimpse into who my paternal grandmother was when she was on this earth.

Ok, I mentioned a recipe in the title, didn't I?  We tried this dish only last week and found it to be tender and delicious.  You'll especially like it if you enjoy a bit of citrus flavor in your meats/sauces!  I served it over brown rice.  

Honey Roasted Pork Loin
2 lbs pork loin  
to taste salt and pepper
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons orange juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 cup chicken broth

Prep Time: 10 mins
Total Time: 55 mins

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Season the pork and place in a roasting pan.

In a separate bowl, mix together the honey, juice, oil and thyme.

Pour over the pork.

Add the broth to the pan.

Bake until internal temperature reaches 150 (45-60 minutes).

Baste frequently.  (I basted every fifteen minutes.)
Strain the pan juices into a saucepan.

Reduce until slightly thickened.

Serve over the sliced pork.

Recipe Resource:

All my best to you!