Hello and welcome!

This blog is a place for me to share thoughts, recipes, things I learn from my Bible, links and anything else I happen to want to post. It is in essence an extension of The Home Maker's Corner. I hope you enjoy it!
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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Garden Fresh -- Cream Cheese Stuffed Peppers

 

A couple of years ago or so my dad grew these yummy but somewhat spicy banana peppers in our garden.  I also had basil in the garden that year, so it was an easy matter to cut the pepper lengthwise, remove the seeds, spread with cream cheese and then sprinkle with snipped basil.  Delicious.  A great simple “salad” too. :-)

Other options:
Use non-spicy peppers or spicier peppers
Use cheddar cheese paste instead
Use other fresh herbs: chives, oregano, cilantro, thyme
Add green onions

By the way, the cream cheese helps to moderate the heat.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Thoughts from the Past -- Strength Only God Can Give


June 8, 2008

Strength Only God Can Give

Colossians 1:11 Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;

Not long ago, while going through a time when I was feeling quite strained in some ways, the Lord brought this verse to my attention. I "happened" to be reading Colossians 1 starting into a week when I really needed this verse. Isn't it amazing, even a luxurious comfort, to see how the Lord does this kind of thing for us? He truly is a kind and careful father. (Psalm 103:13-14)

The thing that particularly impressed me is that strengthening with all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness can only come from the Lord. There are people who are what we would call naturally strong or patient or longsuffering. But this goes beyond that. It is all patience. Wow, how tough is that? Humanly, it's impossible. And, it's all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness! This kind of strengthening can only come from God's glorious power! Human power has too many limits to produce such amazing results.

True, this is hard to live by. I don't know anyone who has this mastered completely, and some of us struggle with it much more than others. But, through our relationship to God in Christ Jesus, this kind of strength is available, and Paul was bold to request it on behalf of the Colossians. What a great thing to pray for our fellow believers, especially when they are going through a hard time. What a great thing to pray for ourselves! But, most of all, what a great and wonderful Father we have who can and will provide such miraculous ability to His own children!

1Corinthians 15:57 But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Mango Salsa

 

Recently I bought some mangoes for a treat for us, but to my disappointment, I discovered they were too sour to eat by themselves.  I recalled the fact that I’d seen a recipe at some point for mango salsa and thought I’d look it up online.  I found several recipes, but thought the combination of ingredients sounded a bit weird.  My husband, however, thought I should at least give it a try.  I picked one recipe that seemed the closest to what I wanted and then made it up to my own needs and tastes.  So, here’s the basic “plan”:

Finely chopped mango (1 and half small mangos made about 2 servings.)
Snipped green onion
Red pepper flakes
A little snipped cilantro
Salt
(Add a little sugar if the mango is still too sour – but – add it only a tiny bit at a time or you may get too much.  If your mangos seem too sweet, you may want to add a touch of lemon juice to add tartness.)

This salsa is good served with meat.  I think it would be especially good with pork.  It would be a zippy sauce to make a non-traditional hamburger topping. :-)  And, an added perk is the lovely color this adds to a meal!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

The Threefold Promise -- A poem by Annie Johnson Flint

 

The Threefold Promise

Isaiah 40:31 But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.

Oh, wonderful promises given
To those who wait on the Lord;
Strength for the faint who have fallen,
Power for weakness outpoured.

Blessed the threefold assurance
Thrilling the soul like a song:
They shall mount up as the eagles
On wide wings and swift wings and strong;

Run with the stride of the racer,
Leaping unwearied and free,
Till he comes to the end of his journey
And the crown of his effort shall see.

But the word for the worn and the weary,
Who know not the rapture of wings,
Who know not the joy of the runner,
What infinite comfort it brings!

Walk and not faint; the slow steppings,
The plodding dull round of the days,
The toil and the heat and the burdens,
The wearying halts and delays.

Oh, promise for those who are walking,
Who falter and stumble and fall,
The courage, the strength and the patience,
This is the sweetest of all.

Annie Johnson Flint

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Brazil Nut Sensation


This was one of my Gramma Hoover’s recipes.  It was one of my dad’s favorites, but others of us like it really well too. :-)  It is rather pricey to make with the cost of Brazil nuts being what it is, but it makes a great rare treat.  I haven’t made this cake for some years now, and I interpreted her somewhat cryptic method of writing down recipes the best I could.

Brazil Nut Sensation

Sift together:

3/4 C. flour
3/4 C. sugar
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt

In a large bowl put:

3 C. shelled Brazil nuts (whole)
2 8 oz. packages pitted dates
1 C. well-drained maraschino cherries

Sift flour mixture over nut mixture.  Mix with hands until nuts and fruit are well-coated.

In another bowl:

Beat until foamy: 3 eggs
Add: 1 tsp. vanilla

Stir this into nut mixture.  Spread evenly in 2 9x5x3 bread pans, greased and lined with waxed paper.

Bake: 1 hr. 45 min. (or 1 hour to 45 minutes?) – or until cake tester comes out clean.

Cool, wrap in aluminum foil and refrigerate up to 5-6 weeks.  (Or freeze.)

Sunday, May 13, 2012

The thousand word project: Tender Strength




Normally I don’t write much with these pictures as I want them to speak for themselves; but this picture, on this day, needs a little more explanation.  I found this photo moving without any explanation.  The strong arms, the tender yet almost sad look on the mother’s face touched my heart; and the photographer’s error in cutting the baby’s head off at just that spot is almost as if it were intentional to emphasize the mother.  By the way, did you notice that she is wearing an apron? :-)
But, there is more to this story.  This sweet-yet-tired faced lady was my Gramma’s cousin, though Gramma always called her “Aunt” Margaret because she was so much older than Gramma.  Aunt Margaret was a special lady.  Only months before this picture was taken, before Baby Jane was born, Aunt Margaret lost her husband.  She had a daughter in her teens and a younger son and daughter.  Her oldest daughter dropped whatever plans she had for her life and went to work to support the family so that they could stay together.  Aunt Margaret submitted to this, maintained the home, and raised her children on her own.  Those were tough times.  God’s enabling power made all this possible, and He blessed them in many ways.  My admiration of her is great.  I’m also humbled to think that I chose the title for this picture before I even knew the whole story.  It not only describes this picture, it describes the lady herself.  My mom and Gramma love her dearly and esteemed her highly.  Through them, I do too.  I look forward to meeting her someday in Heaven.
May God bless the godly mothers, the godly wish-they-were-mothers and hope-to-be-mothers; the godly aunts, grandmothers, cousins and sisters.  We need more ladies of tender strength.
1 Thessalonians 2:7  But we were gentle among you, even as a nurse cherisheth her children:
Ephesians 6:10  Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Graham Crackers

My sister made some graham crackers once years ago.  They were pretty good, but quite different than “store bought”.  We never made them again.  A couple years ago or so I told a friend I’d try to find that recipe for her.  Turns out it wasn’t in the book my mom and I both thought it was in.  I found this one in a magazine I’d saved, but I’m not sure it’s the one my sister made since there were no smudges or telltale marks to show it had ever been used before. ;-)  Anyway, I finally got around to trying this recipe out this year, and here it is.

Graham Crackers

1/3 C. oil
1/2 C. honey
1 Tbs. molasses
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. salt
3 1/2 C. wheat flour (presumably meaning whole wheat)
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/3 C milk

Mix liquids first except milk.  Add dry ingredients alternately with the milk. If dough is too sticky, add more flour.  Roll into smallish walnut size balls and flatten with your hands.  Place about 1/2 an inch apart on lightly greased OR parchment paper lined cookie sheet.  Prick with a fork.  Bake a 300F until edges are slightly browned.  Cool on cookie sheets about 5 minutes before removing to wire racks.  Can be frozen in airtight containers.

Note: I added a bit of lemon juice to this recipe to try to make it taste more like the graham crackers my friend and I enjoy at a restaurant.  The change may have added some flavor, but it didn’t make these taste more like the restaurant’s variety.  These are good, not very sweet, and quite filling.

I also changed the method of rolling them.  The recipe calls for rolling them out and cutting them into squares.  The dough seemed to me to be of the sort that would stick to the surface, so I opted for rolling them into balls and flattening by hand.  It worked very well, and saved some frustration I suspect. :-)

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Thoughts from the Past -- The First and the Last

 

June 5, 2006
The First and the Last

I have been enjoying the book of Isaiah very much lately. It amazes me how we can read through a book of the Bible over and over and still learn new and wonderful things! Truly it is God's book. Man could not have produced something like this!

In the book of Revelation when Jesus Christ said He is the first and the last, that statement alone is enough to assure us that He is God. Revelation 22:13 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. After all, if He is the first He must have been there before the beginning, and only God could start it all. This we know from other scripture as well. John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 The same was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. (Also see Eph. 3:9, Col. 1:16)

Revelation 1:17 And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: 18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.

This passage shows very distinctly that Jesus is speaking, for He is the only one (so far) who was dead and is alive for evermore, and He is the only one who has the keys of hell and death.

But, even more interestingly, we find the LORD God (Jehovah) applying this same title to Himself in the Old Testament as well. In Isaiah we find it twice in the context of creation.

Isaiah 41:4 Who hath wrought and done it, calling the generations from the beginning? I the LORD, the first, and with the last; I am he.

Isaiah 48:12 Hearken unto me, O Jacob and Israel, my called; I am he; I am the first, I also am the last. 13 Mine hand also hath laid the foundation of the earth, and my right hand hath spanned the heavens: when I call unto them, they stand up together.

Now examine another mention.

Isaiah 44:6 Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God.

In the same breath, the LORD (Jehovah) says He is the first and the last and that beside Him there is no God. Therefore Jesus Christ is God, for He has claimed the same name and title for Himself. If you do not call Him God in both the Old and New Testament you make God a liar! Heb. 6:18 and Rom. 3:4

So many people question that Jesus Christ is God in the flesh, or that He was God in the Old Testament. These verses cannot be argued with by an honest person. Thank God for giving us such a clear revelation of Himself and His Son.

Psalm 118:8 It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.

Hebrews 10:35 Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Laying Aside Weights -- The Heaviest Cross -- A Poem by Annie Johnson Flint

 

This poem expresses so well some of the thoughts I’ve had regarding  laying aside of weights that I had to make it part of the series.  Miss Flint says so much in such a short space.  I love her poetry.

The Heaviest Cross

It is not His cross that is heavy;
It is those that our hands have made
That hinder us on our journey,
On our aching shoulders laid;
There is strength for the load He gives us,
And balm for the thorn He sends,
But none for the needless burdens
And none for our selfish ends.

We bear a burden of sorrow;
We carry a weight of gold;
We cling to some treasured idol,
And will not loose our hold:
We bend beneath trouble and worries;
We drag a load of wrong;
And we cry that the cross is heavy,
And sigh that the way is long.

Let us drop the sin that besets us;
Let us cast aside our fears;
Let us give our grief to Jesus;
And break our pitcher of tears;
Let us learn of the meek and lowly
Who giveth the weary rest;
Let us take His yoke upon us,
And walk with Him abreast;

For His yoke is easy to carry,
And His burden is light in weight;
He will do His share of the labor,
For He is a true yoke-mate.
Are we weary and heavy-laden?
Are we anxious and full of care?
That is not the cross of His giving,
But the one that we make and bear.

Annie Johnson Flint

Matthew 11:28-30  Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.