Archive for March, 2010

03/31/10
Amy

(Cooking) Resurrection Rolls


Resurrection Rolls are a fun and easy way to incorporate the real meaning of Easter into the holiday, while simultaneously introducing an easy and yummy family tradition. These sweet rolls begin by wrapping a dipped marshmallow in biscuit dough. When they bake, the biscuit holds it’s shape, but the marshmallow disappears leaving an empty “tomb”.

rollsResurrection Rolls

1 can refrigerated biscuit dough (10 biscuits)
10 large marshmallows
4 T butter
4 T sugar
1 1/2 t cinnamon

1. Melt butter in a small bowl. Mix cinnamon and sugar in another small bowl. Set aside.

2. Pat each biscuit into a flat circle.

3. Roll a marshmallow in the melted butter and then roll it in the cinnamon and sugar mix. Set dipped marshmallow in the center of the flattened biscuit and wrap it by pulling the edges of the biscuit all towards the top. Thoroughly pinch closed and place seam side down in a paper lined muffin cup. Repeat with all marshmallows.

4. Bake at 375 for 10-12 minutes.

*Optional – Top with a small amount of a powdered sugar glaze.

*Tip - Be sure to use fresh marshmallows. If the marshmallows are older and have started to harden, they will not fully melt.

03/30/10
Amy
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(Family Activities) Easter Scavenger Hunt


You could just hand your kids their Easter baskets….or you could send them on a scavenger hunt for them!

Write clues on a small slip of paper and put them into plastic Easter eggs. The difficulty of this activity can be tailored to kids of all ages. For really small kids, you might tell them exactly where to look next (i.e. “Under the couch”) whereas you might make it a more challenging for the older kids (i.e. “Look under a place where you sit.”). If you are the creative type, then you might have fun making them into a poem format. Each clue should give them a hint on where to find the next clue, until they reach the final “prize”.

There are a couple of optional twists you can put on the activity:

First of all, you can give them an empty Easter basket at the beginning of the hunt and each clue can lead them to a treat that they can add to their basket.

A second idea is to have an Easter Bible verse on each clue. As they work their way through the clues, they will read the whole Easter story. The “Resurrection Rolls” can be the treasure at the of the hunt, thus making the empty tomb the final celebration point!

03/29/10
Amy
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(Money-Saving Tips) Easter Baskets on a Budget


You think of the cost of filling Easter baskets as minor. Afterall, the baskets are small and you are filling it with small items….right? These small items can add up, though, especially if you are filling multiple baskets.

Before you spend too much, try visiting your local dollar store. Their Easter section will supply you with everything from Easter baskets to grass filling and plastic Easter eggs to candy. Then browse their isles for non-candy basket fillers. They have small real tools (a little boy’s dream!), hair bows and clips, coloring books, flash cards, pencils, calculators, little handbags, stickers, etc. You’ll be surprised at what you can buy for a dollar! And before you know it, you will have filled your baskets without breaking the budget.

03/28/10
Amy
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Easter!!!


All this week I will be posting ideas that you can use to enrich your celebration of Easter this year and to maybe even begin some traditions that your family will use for years to come. I hope you enjoy them. And as always, I would love to hear about your favorite activities and traditions for the holiday!

Happy Easter!

03/26/10
Amy

(Healthy Living) Sweet Endings


If you are like me, you and your family are probably somewhat programed to finish off your meal with a bit of something sweet. When we are used to having desserts, our body is faithful in reminding us of that fact. But sweet doesn’t have to mean a lot of sugar.

At the end of dinner, bring out a bowl of fruit salad or even just an open a can of fruit (in fruit juice, not corn syrup). This sweet ending to your meal can help curb the sugar cravings and possibly help eliminate a couple of desserts a week.

strawberries1

03/25/10
Amy

(Living Love) Parenting Affirmation


When we interact closely with our children, we can often overlook a special way that our children look at or respond to us. You know, those moments that tell us we are doing something right. Parenting is hard and we get relatively little feedback, so somebody pointing out one of those moments can be really encouraging.

Watch for those little moments to come up when your spouse is interacting with your children. Make note of it and point it out to him later when you the two of you alone. Tell him how you saw the child’s face light up when your spouse complimented them on the way they completed a task or how you noticed their mood completely change after your spouse took a moment to ask them why they seemed to be having a hard day. These little moments in the life of our children are so significant, but we often don’t give them enough credit. Just a little bit of affirmation on our parenting efforts can really lighten our step and make a difference in our energy and motivation to push forward. It is a little, but great gift that you can give to both your spouse and to your children.

03/24/10
Amy

(Just for Mom) Mommy-Flowers


mommyflowersAs spring arrives, we often find ourselves being showered with lots of mommy-flowers from our little ones. Somehow, in the grubby little hands of our child, these weeds magically become lavish and priceless bouquets.

Dedicate a small vase for this special variety of flowers. Having a special place to display the gift sends the message to your child that what they offer is precious and it will be a memento that the two of you can always cherish.

03/23/10
Amy
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(Cooking) Grown-up Grilled Cheese Sandwich


I’ve always been fond of grilled cheese sandwiches, but as an adult, the traditional sandwich has not held the magical appeal that it once did. But then I made this recipe. It was then that I realized that the grilled cheese sandwich had just grown up.

grilledcheese

Grown-up Grilled Cheese Sandwich

1. Lightly butter one side of two pieces of thinly sliced Italian bread. (Note: Do not skimp on the bread!!! It truly makes the sandwich.)

2. On the non-buttered sides of the bread, spread 1/2 T basil pesto.

3. Put 1/4 c. Italian cheese blend on the pesto side of one piece of bread. Layer 2 thin slices of salami on top of the cheese. Then add 1/4 c. Italian cheese blend on top of the salami. Top with the second slice of bread (pesto inside).

4. Cook on a griddle over medium-low heat until the bread is golden brown and the cheese is melted, flipping halfway through cooking.

Enjoy!!

03/20/10
Amy
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(Parenting) Concept of Time: Kids vs Parents


Kids have a very different concept of time than adults.

Adults are all about efficiency and practicality. If we do not have an urgent deadline, we manage to make it seem like there is one.  In contrast, kids find whatever is in front of them to be significantly more important than meeting any ol’ deadline. When they are asked to get into the car and buckle their seat belt, it may take them three times as long as you think is reasonable because they find a worm on the ground, an old cracker wedged between the seats, or they are simply lost in telling you a story of how their friend spilled milk on their shirt. While you may just be loading up for a morning trip to the grocery store, their childish dawdling can be frustrating.

Instead of demanding that they see life and time through your eyes, stop and take a moment to see life through your child’s eyes. Show excitement over their little worm discovery or gently move them along and help them buckle without shutting down their story-telling. Sometimes we need to acknowledge that our deadline is not really so important. In other cases, it is often possible for us to keep our kids on track for our necessary deadlines without demanding that they abandon their developmentally appropriate childhood mindsets.

When we hurry life along, we risk missing some significant moments with our children. What will you discover about life or about your child when you take a moment to see time through their eyes?

03/11/10
Amy
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Winds of Change


It has been just shy of a month since I last posted and I find myself a little unsure as to where to begin. Winds of Change have been blowing through the life of my little family. I’m very tired, but peaceful and happy with the direction in which we are moving.

To preface a little bit, my husband quit his full time job back in November and began to work for himself. It is a change that has been on our hearts for a long time and, while everything didn’t unfold exactly like we had originally planned (it never does), the change has been a great one for him and our family. He has done really well for himself and I am so proud of him. I also really love having him work from home, as do our kids. It has been a great change for our family.

The working transition was one we expected to happen about the time we made an out-of-state move that has been on our hearts for more than a year and a half now. However, after six months on the market last year, our house didn’t sell. As we approached the holidays, we felt led to temporarily take the house off the market and focus on making the initial transition with Scott’s work while we are still here in Tennessee. What followed was a couple of quiet months of rest here. I didn’t have to stress about keeping the house clean, we spent time with friends, and focused on Scott’s work transition and on our family. Looking back, we needed that to prepare us for what was ahead.

A little over a month ago (the same time that I stopped blogging), we relisted our house with a new realtor and a fresh start. We were optimistic that it would sell quickly this time, but we were unprepared for the whirlwind of the next two weeks. In 15 days, we had 14 showings, 1 open house, 2 offers, and 1 contract. With showings nearly every day, and two on others, my life became about survival. It was absolutely wonderful to have Scott around this time to help with that last 30 minute mad-dash cleanup (and even just for moral support), but it also really interrupted his work routine.

To make things even more interesting, we found out the day after we relisted the house that we are unexpectedly pregnant! We love having babies, so we were excited. But to be honest, the timing was a little hard. Pregnancies are hard for me. I am very sick during the first trimester and beyond (with Kaelynn, it was 18 weeks) and even after that, pregnancy usually isn’t a walk in the park for me. I knew that going through my first trimester while selling our house and moving would make it even more of an adventure. So we just prayed that the house would sell quickly and I spent time resting when I could between cleaning and showings.

The real excitement about the pregnancy has come since we had our first ultrasound this week. We saw the baby moving and it had a good, steady heartbeat! I am about 9 weeks along now and am due during the first half of October. Samuel is beyond excited and talks constantly about the baby or kisses my tummy. Kaelynn is a little too young to really understand what is happening. She adores babies, though, and I have no doubt that she will love being a big sister.

Back to our move, our current closing date put us moving mid April. I will confess to you that I have not yet packed a single box. I think the reason is a mixture of disbelief and nausea. I have a tentative plan for packing, but I can never seem to get past doing the laundry.

That said, we are really excited about this move, this new beginning for our family, the possibilities in front of us, and the new life growing inside of me. The Winds of Change are blowing and we feel God’s presence around us.