Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Call to Art

Eileen felt a yearning to paint...and then she allowed herself to do it. As a result, many have been blessed and touched by the heart of the Father. Join us this March at MIA and be encouraged to step out into something new.

If you don't live locally, you can still be blessed by her work...

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Call to Spiritual Motherhood

Periodically I have been asked if I miss teaching. Sometimes I do but not because I miss imparting my biological knowledge to high school students or I like to challenge them to think critically. Although that is a lot of fun. Yes...I used the words "fun" and "high school students" in the same paragraph. LOL.

The students. My kids. That is how I thought about them. Interacting with them and having a positive impact on their lives...that is what I sometimes miss.

My husband is great with all kids - even little ones. And they adore him. He is like a magnet or the pied piper where children are concerned. During Parent's Day at my son's school, Simms was constantly surrounded by children that are not ours. They would ask him questions, want to show him something, request that he read to them, etc. He graciously complied and blessed each and every one of them that day.

Are kids drawn to you? Is your house the one where they congregate? It might be due to more than your great cooking. Join us in February for MIA when Pastor Beth Kempf shares her journey of spiritual parenting.

Monday, February 01, 2010

Monday Munchies - Chicken

Recently I've receive a few of those emails asking for a recipe. It's not that I don't want to give a recipe but then I've got to send the email to a bunch of friends and they have to do the same before I get any recipes. On top of that, the people that I would ask a recipe for were already included on the list. So...here is my recipe. Super good and super easy.

Chicken - skinless and boneless
Brown sugar
Dijon Mustard

Preheat the oven to 350. Place your chicken in a baking pan. Mix together the other 3 ingredients and pour over the chicken. How much of the ingredients do you mix together? You get to decide. I know that is a little crazy but I seriously don't think you can go wrong with this. So you get to be in control or how spicy or sweet your chicken is. Bake for 30 minutes or until done. Trust me - your family will love this! I got thumbs up from all of my boys and that doesn't always happen.

It's killing you that there aren't exact measurements isn't it? It caught me off guard at first too.

Friday, January 29, 2010

I Heart Food Coloring

I love food coloring! I use it to make things fun for the kids. Here is a list of some things we do with it.

1. Bath Paint. I put some of their body wash in a small cup (we have stackable cups in the bathtub that they play with). Then I add just 1 or 2 drops of food coloring. They use a Q-tip as a paint brush and draw on the tub or their bodies. It doesn't stain. They wash it off with a wash cloth before they get out of the tub (so really they are cleaning the tub for me).

2. Colored Water. This is another fun thing for in the bathtub. I fill an empty body wash bottle with water and add a couple drops of food coloring. Their imaginations go crazy with it. They have used it to "wash" a baby (tub toy) and "cook" with it. It's fun and it also turns their bath water color.

3. Change the Color of Food. We have had green pancakes, purple noodles, blue milk on cereal, etc. You can do this to make a holiday special, i.e. red pancakes for Valentine's Day, green noodles for St. Patrick's Day. Or just to have fun.

4. Paint Eggs. This seems obvious, but you don't have to wait until Easter to paint eggs. You can paint eggs all year.

5. Paint Toast. Add food coloring to milk and let the kids use it to "paint" their bread. Then toast the bread (to basically dry it out). Then they can eat their artwork.

6. Science Project. I found this science project that I am going to try with the kids soon. All you need is milk, food coloring, and dish soap. I am not going use is as a science project, just something fun to do and watch.

7. Paint the Snow. Add a couple of drops of food coloring to water in a spray bottle. Let the kids spray the snow. The more colors you have the prettier your yard becomes.

8. Change the Color of a Flower. In the summer, I stop along the road and cut some of those Queen Anne's Lace flower/weed things. We bring them home and put them in water with food coloring. Then watch over a couple of days while the flowers change color. I think you could do this with any white flower.

What do you do with food coloring?

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Getting Rid of That Winter Itch

Do you have that winter itch? Itchy skin, that is. A couple of us have it in our family. It is very common in during these dry Pennsylvania winters. (I post this every winter hoping to help someone.)

I worked 9 years as a medical assistant in dermatology. This is what the professionals recommend to get rid of that winter itch.
  • Take 10 minutes or less in the shower. If your skin wrinkles, you have been in too long. Wrinkles (from being in the shower too long) mean dehydration.
  • Before drying off, rub baby oil or mineral oil over your skin.
  • After drying off, use a thick CREAM (Cetaphil or the drug store brand of Cetaphil is my favorite) on your skin. If it comes in a pump bottle, it is not thick enough. (Lotions are not thick enough and often times are more irritating to your skin)
  • If you can stand it, rub petroleum jelly on your skin before bed.

After taking control over your skin (or if you only have a mild itch to begin with), you don't have to continue with every step. You can usually manage it with just oil or cream.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Call to Prayer

What do you do to celebrate the New Year? Get together with family and or friends? Stay up much later than usual to watch the ball drop? Do you make resolutions and/or keep them?

You may do one or more of the above or you may do nothing. I like to reevaluate the year that we have completed and contemplate what the future holds. I don't necessarily make resolutions. Rather, I prefer to seek God and inquire what changes would benefit me and my family. Does that sound super spiritual to you? Really...it isn't. It's my life. Real life. That doesn't mean that I am able to seclude myself for a large part of January and just rest in His presence. Sounds lovely. Picture that for a moment...back to reality...I am a mom and wife and there are a lot of responsibilities that are mine on a daily basis. Responsibilities that He has blessed me with.

How is this (time with God) accomplished? I rest in the knowledge that He knows where I am at and meets me in that place. I take comfort in the fact that no matter what I am doing, I can talk to Him. There is no other relationship I have that is like this. It's special. And the best part is, no matter what I am doing, I can listen to Him. Conversing with God = prayer. Prayer in my life will not always look like this but in this season - for this period of time - it largely does.

This month at MIA, Sue Eichelberger will be joining us. She is a seasoned mom - one who has faced many storms and challenges. If you live locally, be sure to join us as she shares how she has learned to balance her call to prayer and intercession with the responsibilities of family.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Gingerbread Houses

These are last years pictures because I forgot to take some this year.

I know, I know. You guys probably already think of me as the "crazy craft lady", so I am going to give you more reason to think that.

This is the 3rd year I have had my 2 nephews and my daughter make gingerbread houses. They enjoy coming up with new designs every year. We do the same basic house each year, but change decorations/candy. (Actually we mostly use the stale stuff that we find in our cabinets.)

First you start with a sturdy base. It can be a board, cutting board or even sturdy cardboard (tape 2-3 pieces together to make it sturdier.)

We use this recipe for "glue". It is edible; however, since we use stale crackers and candy we don't eat much of it.

Layout all of your crackers and candy. I forgot. We just use graham crackers for the house. We haven't ventured out to actually make them out of gingerbread. Every year we talk about buying those kits, but haven't done that either.

I find it easier to build the house for my daughter. My one nephew likes to try building his own and he always uses too much glue. It ends up falling apart because the glue can't dry. Besides, I think the kids like decorating it the most. After I build the house, I glue it to the base.

Now it is time to glue the candy/decorations to the house and the "yard". When all the decorating is done, we put marshmallow creme on the yard to make it look like snow.

That's it! I know it sounds like a lot, but the kids love it. And seriously, I think I LOVE IT MORE THAN THEY DO!