Friday, December 31, 2010

A New Year's Eve recap of 2010

Since my hubby fell asleep on the couch early this New Year's Eve, I'll take some time to recap some of the highlights of our 2010.
  • started leading a new caregroup from church, a group of folks who we have come to love. We are blessed by our times together and encouraged by how we see God at work in each other's lives.
  • special days or times away as a couple and/or family: trip to Annapolis for Lawrence and me pre-busy season, our family day at the beach post busy season, trips to PA and WV to spend vacation time visiting with family and friends
  • hikes with the kids were especially fun for us this fall. We hit trails at Jerusalem Mill, Anita C.Leight Estuary, Ma/Pa, Susquehanna State Park, Rock State Park, and Eden Mill.
  • With the help of our friend, Jeff Cole, we installed laminate flooring in our living room, something I've been wanting to do for a long time. We also purchased some new living room furniture and re-arranged our basement a bit to accomodate an at home "school room".
  • Judah and Tucker graduated from Kindergarten!
  • We also began homeschooling Judah and Tucker for first grade this past fall.
  • I came upon two blogs this year that have been a source of encouragement and practical help to me: and
  • I have made some changes to how we eat as a family and our sources of food based upon the influence of this documentary: and the book, "Real Food" by Nina Planck (
  • We also discussed some paradigm shifts in our thinking about finances and some of our goals in that area of life based on the book, "Rich Dad, Poor Dad" by Robert Kiyosaki:
  • We were given the privilege of walking through others' trials and hardships, helping to bear one another's burdens through prayer, and extending comfort and encouragement as God directed us. We've been on the other side of it so many times; it is a true blessing and honor for God to give us opportunities to walk with others through their hard times.
Don't know what 2011 will hold for us, but I'm confident that the God who has brought us "safe thus far" will lead us safely all the way Home. (

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A Little Bit of Christmas

If you're not tired of all things Christmas yet, feel free to take a look at some of the snapshots from our last month of celebrating!

I like to take pictures of how I decorate so that I have something to look at next year when I've forgotten how I did it! :)

We're a part of a homeschool co op that meets once a week. Here are a few shots of a Christmas presentation put on by all the children who participate in the co op along with some pictures of what our everyday life in December looks like at home...

On Christmas Eve, we had the special privilege of having two of our favorite buddies come to stay with us all day while their momma delivered baby #3!! WE love you, Grigers!

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Chocolate Crunch

Here's something we made today, and it's delish! A little something different than the typical Christmas cookie this time of year...

Chocolate Crunch:
3 c. regular oats
1 cup Rice Krispies
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
1/3 c. chopped pecans
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 c. honey
2 Tblsp canola oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 oz. bittersweet chocolate (60 or 70% cocoa), finely chopped
1/2 c. dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
Cover jelly roll pan with parchment paper.Coat paper with cooking spray.
Combine first 6 ingredients in large bowl.
Combine honey & oil in saucepan until warm (abt 2 min.).
Remove from heat. Add vanilla & chocolate; stir until smooth. Pour chocolate mixture over oat mixture and stir until evenly coated. Spread onto pan. Bake at 300 degrees for 20 min, stirring after 10 min. Cool completely.Stir in cranberries.
Serve over yogurt, fresh fruit, ice cream or eat it alone.
Store in an airtight container for up to one week, or freeze for up to one month.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Ladies Christmas Breakfast, 2010

I'm consistently amazed by the creativity the ladies of our church show in putting together beautiful tablescapes for our annual Ladies' Christmas Breakfast. In typical fashion, I sneak into the sanctuary for an early glimpse at all the finished tables, deciding what elements I love about each one, and I choose my personal favorite. My tastes lean toward a more rustic look with natural elements; hence, my favorite typically portrays those things. This year is no different.

Convincing me further that this table would be my favorite is the fact that its creators were two women relatively new to our church, one of whom has been in our church less than a year. Both are military wives. Why is this significant? I have so much respect and affection for these women.

In addition to willingly yoking themselves to a man who serves our country in the causes of freedom, sometimes having to be without their husbands for lengths of time AND often moving around the country, even the world, every other year or so, my experience has been that military wives just jump into life and friendship. And so it has been with these women.

Donna and Mary, thank you for spurring me on in so many ways. And, thanks for jumping into our church life by decorating a table this year. I loved it! In fact, it was my favorite!

And, here is a slideshow of a number of other tables I found delightful.

The best way to appreciate these pictures is to click on the slideshow to see larger pictures.