Tuesday, January 31, 2012

I love this quote

“Before you were conceived I wanted you. Before you were born I loved you. Before you were here an hour I would die for you. This is the miracle of Mother’s Love“ -Maureen Hawkins

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Music Therapy Better Late Than Never

I seem to have missed Thursday last week. But the honest truth is the hubs was off work so I didn't spend too much time on the computer. I wanted to share this song manly because like most music that is on repeat at my house my kids have latched on to this one. My 3 year old has been singing the line " I was blind blind blind but now I see" over and over and over again for weeks now. No better choice for what to share then was is on repeat around here...it encourages us and we pray it encourages you!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Tastey Tuesday-Crock pot Chicken Tortilla Soup

This week I am going to share a yummy crowd pleaser! The best part is that it is a crock pot meal and my family LOVES when I make this. Hope you enjoy!

Crock Pot Tortilla Soup

3-4 boneless chicken breast

1 4 oz can of chopped green chilies drained

1 LARGE can of diced tomatoes WITH Juice

2 cups chicken broth (tend to use more)

Cumin, Salt and Pepper to taste

Flour Tortilla's

Monterey Jack Cheese

Place chicken in the bottom of crock pot (I do use my raw chicken some people cook theirs first). Pour tomatoes, chilies and 1 cup chicken broth over top. Season with cumin, salt and pepper. Cook on high for about 4 hours. When chicken is done shred it with 2 forks and return to crock pot with another cup or so of chicken broth allow to cook another 30 minutes to an hour. This is a good time to add more seasoning. Cut tortillas into strips with a pizza cutter.

Deep fry tortilla strips until golden brown making "chips". Make as many as you want for topping you soup.
Serve finished soup with cheese and tortilla strips.

Hope you enjoy this easy week night diner. You'll have to let me know if you try it:)

Friday, January 20, 2012

Fruit is our encouragement

Sometimes as a parent I think you make choices that you at the time aren't really sure how they will actually work but you are confident you are making the right choice. Clear as mud? Back this time last year we were at the start of our 2ND semester of school and we had already chosen to at the end of that year pull our middle child out and bring him home to be home schooled. Short back story...He was being bullied at school and he was only in the 1st grade and nothing was being done about it. It was then as I emerged myself in research of curriculum, laws, and resources I realized as I prayed over what we were about to embark on that I realized I had a slew of other reasons why my heart was being called to this and almost none had anything to do with the bullying but rather what kind of children we wanted to raise. I have always been straight on this blog I am a lover of Jesus, He is my friend, He is the way the truth and the life, and my family chooses to serve Him! I realized I wanted my children at home during this very "touchy" time in their lives. I wanted to be the one who called the shots as to what they are actually subjected to. As I prayed I prayed that God would show me how to handle actually pulling our oldest child out of school also. I knew I might have a fight on my hands. But thanks to wonderful influence from some AWESOME home schooled kids whose parents share much of the same views as us her heart was also changed softened to the idea and SHE told me she wanted to be home too!

When we started this year there were many tears as attitudes, preconceived notions, and worldly desires stayed in the for front of our children's minds. I had days when I wanted to throw in the towel and days when I wondered what I had gotten myself into. All of those things have changed. I am really beginning to treasure this time with my children as God intended me to . I am so blessed by the fruit I see each morning as we snuggle on the couch for a read-a-loud or when I see one of my older children tying the shoes of their toddler brother. Attitudes theirs and mine have changed.

I just had to share what a difference time and commitment makes. I have watched my almost 8 year old son mature, change, grow in his hearts desire to help others as he shares Jesus' love, I have watched him go from tears over hours of homework to actually being proud of what he is doing and putting forth more effort. I have seen my daughter who seemed more self-centered open up making new friends, caring less about what others have to say, I watched her love for Jesus grow and I have been able to develop a much closer relationship with her. As a matter of fact this experience has helped grow much more positive relationships with me and all of my children, helped their relationships with their siblings and with all of us as a family unit.

Sometimes you just need fruit and I am so blessed by fruit...It gives me the courage to continue on and it seeds my decision letting me know I am doing just what God wants me to do for my family. I need that right now as we are going through some of the toughest times in our almost 11 year marriage and I feel so pulled to enter back into the work force. Thank you God for fruit and for opening my eyes to basking in this moment not to rushing through the tough to get to something better because when we do we miss the good in this storm!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Music Therapy Thursday

For Music Therapy today I have to share a current worship favorite at our house. Last Sunday our normal worship leader was out of town on a youth trip so we had a fill in from another church. He did a good job and shared a new song or two this being one of them. Cooper had stayed in church with us instead of going to the nursery and he was taking in all the songs. He loves music...I can see lots of music in his future a talent I pray he uses for the Glory of God. Anyway...Monday on the way to the eye doctor Cooper said from the back seat " When I grow up and can stand up holding a guitar I wanna sing the loin roaring inside song!" I was stunned he had remembered the words and a little proud all at once:) We then heard it on the radio the next day. We googled and found a youtube video...and have been hooked. We love this song. Listen, enjoy, be free in your worship!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Works for Me Wednesday-Snack Baskets

Sometimes (and not all that often) I come up with an idea that actually works and I stick to it! After weeks and weeks of my kids mindlessly snacking about all day I decided I need to do something about it. I mean my budget can only take so much mass consumption if know what I mean;) I had seen this idea some where...not pinterst though this is pinterest worthy...I think I actually saw this back in my Supper Nanny watching days. Anywho, You purchase a basket, box or some kind of container for each child. Either the night before or in the morning they choose their snacks for the day if you child attends school outside of the home school snacks don't get included. If they choose to eat all their snacks at once then no more for the day. Now of course I am not starving my children I am just trying to eliminate the mindless eating that has been going on around here. You know the I'm bored lets eat kind of thing.

So Monday I hit up my local Wal-Mart and purchased these. It was a 3 pack and only set my back around $1.50. I would really like to spiff them up but because of their size I am not sure how I am going to do it yet...but for sure they need to have each child's name on them or a ribbon to indicate who they belong to!

Here they are all lined up on my kitchen counter awaiting snacks. See what I mean they need some jazzing up. Someone craft please give me and idea or two!
Here they are all lined up and filled with snacks. Now this was taken later in the day and doesn't have a whole days worth of snacks. My general snack allotment is 2 morning snacks and 2 afternoon snacks. Not pictured is Coopers snack box he takes to Kiddie Kollege with him on the days he attends I let him select that snack on the mornings he attends and but it right in his pack. What kind of snacks do your kids enjoy? We are always looking for yummy ideas!

I am so proud of this idea. It has been a wonderful thing for both me and the kids. It really has helped us be mindful of what we are eating, when we are eating and most important why we are eating. Now onto trying to find a better chore system for us that we can actually stick to;)

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Tastey Tuesday-Mexican EggRolls/Loaded Potato Bites

This year we decided to ring in the New Year with a little get together with our friends the Poole's. And to make it easy and fun we did appetizers/snacky food and not a sit down meal. I chose to make Mexican Egg Rolls and Loaded Potato Bites as 2 of my appetizer's. I wanted to share the recipe for Mexican Egg Rolls because every time I make them people RAVE on and on about how yummy they are! I seem to be famous for these. This time I documented the process which seems long but if you prep the chicken the day before or even have some shredded chicken in your freezer (I do this often) you can really cut down on your time it can also be completely prepped the day before and then rolled and fried or baked when ready!

Mexican Egg Roll
Veg. Oil 1-2 c. grated cheddar cheese
1 1/2 lbs. shredded chicken (cooked) 4 Tsp. picante sauce
1pkg. chili seasoning 1can of black beans
4 oz can green chilies 1sm onion chopped
1pkg egg roll wraps found in produce section near tofu
salt and pepper to taste

Heat oil until hot add chicken and onions. Stir until onions are translucent and tender. Drain and rinse black beans combine in a large mixing bowl with chicken, onions, chili seasoning (I only use half a package), picante sauce (I use more then called for), cheese, and drained chilies. Mix well.

This is my ingredients combined (well minus some).
These are the egg roll wraps we buy. Any brand is fine as long as it is the egg roll wrap.

Now that your ingredients are combined...spoon a heaping tablespoon of the mixture into each wrap and fold/roll following the "rolling directions" on your package. Here you see a plate of rolled wraps ready to fry. I don't have any picks of the frying process but it is easy...Just heat a small amount of oil in a frying pan, lay wraps in and allow to cook until golden on one side then flip and repeat. I will add here yes you can bake them I have never personally tried it but if you do please let me know how they turn out. I have been afraid to bake them for fear they wouldn't crisp up.

Finished product below

Since we were having these as an appetizer we just served them with sour cream. If it is a main course serve with sour cream salsa, and we do a side of rice with them. YUMMY FOR SURE!


For this shindig I served them on the same platter as Loaded Potatoes Bites you see the sour cream in the middle. I got the idea for the Potato Bites on Pinterest but tweaked the process for myself. Recipe for those below:

Loaded Potato Bites

4 (or more depending on how many you plan to serve) baking or russet potatoes washed well not peeled

shredded cheddar cheese

real bacon pieces (I used the ones out of the salad section)

green onions

Slice potatoes about 1/2 an inch thick. Submerge in melted butter. Place on a sprayed or oiled cookie sheet. Bake for around 12 minutes on 350 flip and bake another 10-12 minutes or until just tender. Top with bacon, green onions and cheese. Serve warm with sour cream or ranch for dipping.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Declarations not Resolutions

So if you have read this blog for anytime or if you know us personally you know that 2011 wasn't the best year to date. We started the year with a job loss and things just seemed to get worse from there. We did have some great things happen we got a wonderful new home, our kids made it to the state swimming meet, started homeschooling, and then last but not least God rescued us from the enemy and continues to today. That being said when you make a list the bad seemed to out weigh the good. So after a very motivational sermon from my pastor on January 1 Michael and I decided we wouldn't make any resolutions but instead we would make declarations over our lives, marriage, family, home, finances, well over every area of our lives. God has promised much to those who follow Him we have tasted and seen and we want more. So here goes nothing we are putting all our eggs in one basket that is the "Jesus Basket" we have no fall back position and no amount of luck will ever see us through only Jesus will. This year will be good we will prosper and we will not fall victim to the lies of the enemy in our lives.