Thursday, October 30, 2008
My real life friend, Dori will be writing devotions for us each Monday morning. Devotions with Dori!! God laid this on my heart weeks ago and I emailed Dori and asked her what she thought about that and she gladly said, Yes!
Dori is such a gifted writer with a big heart for Jesus. I have known Dori and her family for over 25 years. I am honored that she is willing to write a weekly devotion for us!!
Please come back Monday for our first Monday devotion. I love God's Word as I know you do.
ALSO, a reminder, please check your emails. My helper Georgia is sending your Siesta name to you for the Ornament Exchange.
Some of you did not leave an email so Georgia will leave a comment on your blog.
ONE more thing. I have received several emails with photos for our Fall Photo Contest. The deadline is November 16, 08. The winner will receive a 25.00 Visa gift card. Just in time for Christmas. :)
Before I forget, if you haven't sent in a spotlight please do so. We really want to introduce you to the Siestas and you may email Kim at: firstname.lastname@example.org This is one of our favorite things to host on the blog!
I really do think that is it. At least for now. :)
Have a great weekend!!
Please send me your mailing address to: email@example.com
Also, your Siesta name will be sent to you tomorrow evening. Please be looking for that in your email. I am so excited that so many signed up for our first annual Christmas Ornament Exchange. I cannot wait to see your ornanments. They can be homemade, store bought , and if you want to send a few extra goodies that is fine. Get your creative juices flowing and here are the rules again:
The Christmas Ornament Exchange Rules:
Please send your ornament to your siesta in time for them to get it by 12-01-08.
On Monday, 12-8-08 we will have an ornament show and tell. A linky will be provided so we can visit each other's blogs and look at our ornaments.
Thank you Siestas for playing along and may God bless each of you and your families this holiday season. Have fun shopping for your ornaments.
We will have more Christmas goodies and themes after Thanksgiving.
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
And yet, I find that my heart swells with joy as we look forward to the holiday season! I love the holidays. I never tire of them and never have gotten to the point where I have been ready for them to be over. I just love them. I love family gatherings. I love the laughter, the smiles and truly? I love the food that is available!
This year is especially wondrous, since we will sit at my Chris' family's table for the first time in four years for Thanksgiving. Chris has already been talking about the fare that will be dished up! And me? I love to hear their family together. That is even better than the shrimp dip that Chris' sister makes (you can make it from this recipe here).
I love the anticipation! I love the planning. I love serving up a favorite dish and hearing from him that it is as good, if not better than his mom's. That is a high compliment, indeed!
Oh, and I love fried turkey! I love it when it is so hot it will nearly burn your tongue as you eat it. And I love to chase it down with some tasty, southern sweet tea. Also? I love to taste the turkey, before it is being offered. I think it is the one instance where "stolen food tastes sweet" could not be a bad thing. How can it be wrong when it tastes so right??
Oh my. It is is a slippery slope, isn't it--pushing those limits? Lord, help us.
I do not love being responsible for making all of the food, serving it to just my family of six, and cleaning off the meat from the turkey bones after it's been served once or twice. This has been our story the past three years. We have no family here, so holidays have been a bit different. There is both good and bad in the mix. We have invited folks to share with us. We have made new memories.
But OH! How I love to put my feet under my Mother-in-law's rich, mahogany, table for 12 and hear the banter and laughter of brothers, sisters and parents. I love the lazy Susan in the middle of the table. And I love, love, love how this Baptist family will bring out the brandy sauce to go on top of the Christmas Cake Custard. That just makes me smile. I think it is just fun. It's the little things sometimes that make me smile the biggest.
To share the love with you dear ones, I will begin the season with this very recipe. It's in the cookbook, if you have one, on page 203. His Mom makes it just as often at Thanksgiving, as she does at Christmas. We all love to tease about how we could just drink the sauce. It will surely make you want to have seconds, if your tummy can handle its rich goodness.
Christmas Cake Custard
4 c. cubed pound cake
1 qt. light cream
7 med. eggs
1 c. sugar
¼ t. vanilla
1 T. butter
pinch of nutmeg
Beat eggs. Heat cream in microwave 'til warm. Add rest of ingredients, except pound cake.
In 12x8x2" pan spread the cakes cubes evenly on bottom. Pour liquid over the top and press down to soak up the liquid. Bake for 50 minutes in a water bath (put this pan in a larger pan with water in it) in 350 degree oven. Remove and cover with brandy sauce...topped with whipped cream!
½ lb. butter
1 lb. dark brown sugar
2 lemons (juice and zest)
2 eggs (beaten)
Place all in heavy sauce pan and cook on med-hi heat for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and cool. Then add ½ c. Apricot brandy.
So, what have you tried lately that you want to share? Are there any recipes from the cookbook you have enjoyed? How about Thanksgiving?
Over the next 3 weeks, I'd love for us to begin sharing our family must-have RECIPES at the Thanksgiving table--also the recipes of leftover dishes that you make this time of year. So be thinking about what you'd like to share! On the fourth and fifth weeks, I will publish the recipes in the post. First, I will share the recipes for the table. And the day before Thanksgiving, I'll post the leftover fare. Whatdya think? Are you in?
If so, just post them in the comments from the recipe talk posts or email them to me at chrishollysmith at msn dot com, if you'd rather. Thanks Siestas. You know...I love you all so much. I am giving thanks for YOU all to Jesus right this minute.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Follower of Christ, wife of Vaughn and Mom to two amazing daughters – Charity 22 years old and Paige 15, who we call the Princess and the Anti-Princess.
Both are beautiful and outspoken and as different as night and day. And I survived the wedding of the Princess – May 17, 2008 and it was wonderful and wild.
We live in Alabama – it’s one of those kind of rural, but sort of close to the city places. A bit of both worlds. I can be in front of the Zebra farm (which is in the middle of nowhere) or at the Starbucks drive-in depending on which way I travel.
I gave my life to Christ at a revival meeting when I was 12 years old. I would love to tell you that I walked the straight and narrow since that day, but I haven’t. I stumbled, fell, and tripped my way through this thing called life. I’ve made some big mistakes, but God is good – all the time – and He has taken my life of bumps and bruises and poured out His grace over it. I think of it like chocolate gravy over some really bad, lumpy biscuits.
I’m a writer, my book, Girlfriends, God, and Grace: How to Have a Great Girlfriend Adventure comes out in April! It’s such a God thing. His grace is just amazing! Six years ago God put my feet on the path of the journey that became this book. Through much laughter, some tears, a bit of heartache, and lots and lots of prayers, I’ve lived and loved these last six years with some of the most amazing girlfriends -- God given girlfriends. I live in awe of His amazing grace and goodness. I am stunned that this is the life that He has given me to lead.
I’m blessed to write, speak, and (most recently) blog for His glory. This doesn’t mean my life is a fairytale, far from it, I still struggle to make ends meet, the laundry still piles up, the teenager back talks, and the dog whines, but in the big scheme of things – I’m blessed.
It’s so cool to be a part of this Siesta group. I haven’t posted as much as I would have liked – mostly because I put myself on blogging restriction. I had a book to finish and I couldn't read all my blogs and still find time to write, but the load has lightened a bit, so expect to see me around a whole lot more.
The what’s coming next in my life – I’m so excited to be going to the live taping of Breaking Free in New Orleans. Five nights (and one day) of sitting under Beth Moore’s teaching as she brings God’s word to us! I can’t wait – only a few more weeks. We start on November 10th! I know a few Siestas are going and I’m hoping that we have a great Siesta turn out.
Another super cool happening – I’m blogging for the Girls Getaway Cruise! It’s a wonderful Christian cruise happening in Feb 2009 – drop by at http://www.girlsgetawaycruise.blogspot.com/. I'm so blessed by all of you, more than you will ever know.
Keep posting, commenting and blogging -- it's good for the spirit.
See you around the blog!
Friday, October 24, 2008
Her Prayer Requests:
Church conflict...husband a pastor who unashamedly preaches the Word....the last pastor of 26 years preached 15-20 minute sermonettes...handful of folks who cannot handle "meat" really bothered.
Prodigal daughter ran away from home.
Job fell through for me.
Major financial difficulties.
Prodigal returns home, but not to the Lord.
Church conflict escalates....the disgruntled want my husbands resignation.
Prodigal attempts suicide..almost succeeds (month ago). Walk with her through a residential treatment center,(not Christian) a nightmare.Trying to get her placed in a Christian residential treatment center, very complicated. Dealing day to day with her depression and self-harm.
Church conflict getting worse...praying and looking for a new place of service.
In the midst of all this, God has brought sweet times. My grandson was born two months ago, right after my daughter and her husband began pastoring their first church here in the good ole state of Mississippi. He is the light of my life...so precious. I'll have to get up some pictures. Also, my 2nd born in getting married in January to a sweet guy who is a youth minister. God IS good and what He does is good. I WILL praise Him for our times are in His capable hands. I have never quoted the 5 Believing God statements so much in my life! I believe every one of them. I bless you dear siesta to rally the siestas in prayer on my behalf. I need an "Aaron" right now to hold up the arms of this "Moses"!Thank you for checking on me....I know God sent you my way!
Good Morning Siestas!
I am volunteering at the Minister's Wives conference in Nashville next year and I am curious how many siestas we have that are minister's wives and if you will be attending the conference in March.
I would love to meet up with you.
Please let me know in a comment if you are attending this conference.
I am praying that God will make a way for you to attend this conference. I volunteered as an encourager at the first Minister's Wives conference in Chattanooga and your sweet faces are still in my mind and heart!!!
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Also, the winner will be announced for Travis Cottrell's Christmas cd. I got them in the mail a few days ago and it is good!!! Such a powerful voice.
I think that is it for right now. Have a blessed weekend!!!
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Today I was at my "Stepping Up" Bible study, and Beth encouraged us to give generously and give grace generously. I was thinking that I'd share some foods today that you could share with a friend or neighbor or someone whom you'd like to bless, who just had a baby or surgery.
We have a family in our church, and they have 10 children. Most of them were all sick from various ailments and found that they had a terrible mold problem. Basically they moved out in a hurry a week and a half ago, and they had to leave everything in their house. So they have nothing. People are getting gift cards and giving furniture and meals to bless this sweet family.
These are the kinds of families, who need encouragement. Do you know someone like that? Well, bless them. Bless them and pray for them.
Beat eggs in a large mixer, add pumpkin pie filling, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and evaporated milk; mix well. Pour into a greased 13x9" baking dish. Sprinkle with cake mix. Drizzle with butter.Sprinkle pecans and coconut on top and bake in pre-heated 325 degree oven for 1 hour. From my dear friend, Melissa R.
Easy Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas
1 can cheese soup
½ c. milk
2 c. diced cooked chicken
½ c. salsa
1 sm. can chopped green chilies
1 t. chili powder(I like a bit more)
8 flour tortillas
Mix soup and milk then set aside.Mix chicken with salsa, chilies, chili powder and 2 T. of soup mix.
To make enchiladas (as if a Texan needs direction for this) along one side of each tortilla, spread 1/3 c. chicken mixture. Roll it up and place each one, seam down, in greased baking dish. ~ spread remaining soup mixture over top enchiladas. Cover with foil and bake at 375 for 35 minutes or 'until hot and bubbly' (as Keith's King ranch chicken recipe said!!) Hope you enjoy it!!
Easiest and Best Ever Beef Stroganoff
¼ cup butter
1 ½ lbs. round steak
1 t. garlic salt
2 T. flour
1 t. salt
½ t. pepper
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
1 sm. container of sour cream
Sauté onion in hot butter. Add meat, garlic, salt, pepper and flour. Cook for about 10 minutes then turn on low heat. Add soup and simmer 15-20 minutes. Stir in sour cream just before serving. Serve over buttered egg noodles.
And some fun quotes and a picture from the cookbook:
Deborah in GA
"Life is uncertain - eat dessert first!”
Mary Beth Ferrara
This picture is of our adopted college student, Kristy. She is now grown and married and a pediatrician, but she still calls me, "Mom." I love her heart for serving. What a treasure she is! Here she is on a medical mission trip in Mexico, and this little girl was born with a major heart malformation and has had many open heart surgeries already. They were checking her out and getting her ready for a dental examination.
That's why we need to share our blessings--even if we have nothing financially to give, we can all pray. Jesus sees when you care. And He's so proud when you do!
If you do not have a cookbook and would like one--email me at chrishollysmith at msn dot com. I have 65 books that need homes. It would help me out greatly, if you were planning on getting some for Christmas, for you to contact me as soon as possible. They are $18 plus shipping and ALL proceeds go to build a clean water well for Life in honor of Beth and her staff at Living Proof.
At this point, I am going to sell these that I have in hand, and then I will not do another order, until I have over 75 pre-orders that are pre-paid for the fifth printing. I hope that is good for everyone. I know that having them in stock is nice, but really we can't afford to do it that way. I wish we could.
Have a wonderful and blessed day, Siestas!
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
My name is Tammy Allen-Schenke, otherwise known as Grateful in Georgia or Inga to some,
and my sweet husband Bruce often just calls me, “Hey, Adrian!”, so I'll answer to just about anything.
God blessed me with 3 wonderful children, the world’s greatest Daughter in Heart, 3 precious Grand Children and 2 dandy Grand Dogs and yes...I claim the dogs!
Dave and My Bethy...a woman of many names.
Me and my girls
The three K-kids...Kyra, Kaden and Kylie
Two of My Favorite Things!
Sasha, the little captain
(sorry to report I don't have any photos of Kaiser, my other Granddog...I am sure ya'll are disappointed!)
My darling Bruce, 2 Grands and I live in Kennesaw, Georgia
a lovely city just northwest of Atlanta. Missouri natives, my husband and I were both born and raised in the St. Louis area.
Note: For you all you St. Louisans, I went to Mc Cluer North High School and Bruce went to Melville.
I’ve got to start by telling you, writing this Spotlight has been about as difficult as birthing a baby for me. As I've said on my blog,“if I type it out, it's gotta be genuine and from my heart”, truth be told, looking on screen at my life thus far I’m just blown away. How in the world am I still standing?
I apologize for the length of this post, but trust me when I tell you the original made 'War and Peace' look like Cliff Notes, more graphic and detailed than needed for postings such as this.
The bare bones of my testimony is that I’ve occupied all manner of pit from birth on. It has taken nearly half a century and supernatural intervention that began after the death of my youngest child just over 3 years ago before I finally started realizing the truth of my existence.
Through divine manipulation, God brought the radical teachings of Beth Moore into my life. This proved to be the catalyst that drove me deeper into the Word and a relationship with God the likes of which I had never fully known before.
Prior to my Laurens home going, I lived and believed myself to be a 'Pity Child of God'. After accepting Him in my heart as a child of 10, I was passionate to spread the Word. Yet the pit relentlessly drew me back, making sure I knew what I was and where I came from. My upbringing caused me to view my Heavenly Father in a very brutal way. Unwittingly I felt God was always looking to catch me messing up and just like I knew parents to be…would rightly come down on me with everything He had.
Despite these lies I viewed as truths, I attempted to ‘be’ good enough to deserve the love of my Father. Of course with every failure, I knew I was moments from destruction and God yanking me outta here because I was such a poor example of Christianity. HIS children would never fall so far, so hard and as sinfully as I did.
My bias’s to the contrary, God never let me go, never stopped loving me and never gave up on me, never. I am overwhelmed with gratefulness and humbled beyond measure that He loves me like He does.
Truly only a God like You!!
After my daughter’s sudden death, I was certain God had ripped her out of here because I had never lived up to what He had planned for my life. Though I know now it was a lie straight from the pits of hell, I spent some long hard months struggling to make any kind of sense of it all….more often than not just believing I was not good enough to deserve any better. Now it seemed my children would suffer for my wickedness.
Within 8 weeks of Laurens death, I was asked to take custody of my 2 year old granddaughter, as her mother (my eldest daughter) was making dangerous life choices.
What was God thinking?
How could I be of any possible use to this tiny, precious but shattered toddler? What a pair we made...the both of us…walking wounded.
Lord what ARE You thinking?
He knew better of course….doesn’t He always?
Late one morning in the deserts of Arizona, a woman I met that very week mentioned Beth Moore, Breaking Free and gave a line or two of Beth’s testimony. In those moments, with her passing comments God flooded my hurting heart with the most amazing sweetness of His true all encompassing love for me.
The hope that I clung to during the most trying days of my life proved more well founded than anything I could ever imagine. My faith…though oh so weak at times, was rewarded beyond anything I could’ve ever imagined!
Did God ever show up with so much fanfare, grace, love, peace and eventually…joy…real Joy! Did I tell you about the JOY?
Yes, joy truly comes in the morning after most brilliantly after our deepest and darkest of nights!
I now have the most obnoxious burning passion to pour out the very good news of Jesus Christ to everyone, everywhere. My constant prayer is that God will let His light be blinding to everyone I meet, as blindingly bright as the deepest darkest pits I spent far too much of my life in.
Now this Siestahood of bloggers…um, I have met so many of you online and a few face to face. Truly, everyone has been such a delightful blessing.
If someone had told me I would be a part of an online community like Siestaville, I would have thought them loopy…no, not me, no, no, no. As it turns out…go ahead,
you can call me Loopy or Inga or anything else for that matter…but Praise God I’m so glad to be called a Siesta!
If we haven’t met yet please come by the blog at http://www.gratefulinga.com/ and we’ll trade stories and share a big cyber-hug
Love to you all,
Saturday, October 18, 2008
Thursday, October 16, 2008
We hope you all have a wonderful birthday!! We pray that you all will have a blessed year filled with new beginnings, fresh starts, breakthroughs, provisions, desires granted and may you be filled with a renewed passion for God and his Word!! Many , many blessings on you all.
"May the Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace." Numbers 6:24-27
Montana Siesta 4th
Kimberly Eades 10th
Lori Boyd , 17th
Lori , 20th
Kim , Staying Strong ,21st
Ila Simmons, 22nd
Robyn , 24th
Sue, a.k.a. Hiker Mama 14th
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Please feel free to tell about any recipes you have tried this week in the comments! I love to hear about your experiences.
Anyhoo, I've been sick for quite a few days. And I have had a lot of Dayquil, Nyquil, steam showers, Vicks and lots o' soup. I'm feeling a bit better--still trying to breathe through my nose again, though. Is that TMI? So sorry, blame it on the Theraflu...
So this week, I have a wonderful recipe (not in the cookbook) to share with you from one of our Siestas, Sharon. She is a chef, and she gladly said I could share this wonderful recipe with you. So here it is:
The Best Potato Soup!
4 russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
3 stalks celery, diced
1 medium onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
6-8 slices bacon cooked and crumbled
8 oz. ham, finely sliced (I like the deli ham better than the half or whole hams that you find)
2 T. plus one stick butter
1/2 c. flour
8 oz. sharp cheddar, grated
1 round smoked Gouda, grated
1 c. heavy whipping cream
2 t. salt
1/8 t. ground black pepper
Sauté onion, garlic, celery and ham in 2 T. melted butter for 8 minutes on medium heat. Cook bacon in a separate frying pan, until crispy.
In a large stock pot boil 8 c. water and add potatoes, cooked bacon and sautéed mixture. Boil on high heat for 25 minutes. Remove a few of the potatoes and set aside.
Make roux: melt 1 stick of butter...when melted, add flour and stir over medium low heat for one minute. Slowly blend this into the stock pot now at a medium heat until thick. Turn heat down to low and slowly add heavy cream. Stir well. Then add salt, pepper and both cheeses. Stir constantly, until the cheeses are melted. Add back the set aside potatoes.
Serve with any topping you want, like green onions, sour cream, shredded cheddar or bacon. Also, if you like it chunkier, set aside more potatoes.
This is from Sharon Brumfield and given to you with her permission. She is an awesome and talented chef! Stop by and thank her for sharing her wonderful treasure of a recipe. Also? She has some recipes on her blog, as well as a wonderful (Pele) journey that God is taking her family on right now. Pray for our Siesta, as she and her husband walk by faith.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you. Psalm 9:10
We have two different people with different situations and they need prayer. I thank you in advance for having caring hearts and taking time to pray for your sisters in Christ.
In my bible study this morning, I learned of a wife/mom of four children (all under age 11) who is undergoing brain surgery tomorrow morning. She has a tumor located up against her jugular vein that they have said is inoperable, but they're going to try surgery tomorrow. It's apparently her only option. When they told us about her, they talked of her faith, her positive outlook and spirit, and her peace. We're all praying here for her -- those that know her and those that don't. I thought maybe our siestas could lift her up tomorrow during her surgery too! (The email below is from Terri herself, and has a link to a blog her brother set up that will follow her progress through this week.)
Hi! Twas the night before surgery and all through the house...everyone was praying!
My brother was kind enough to set up a blog that could be updated for anyone who is interested in the events this week. Feel free to check it out at your leisure.
God is awesome and has blessed me with so many praying friends, like you. I feel like anyone (even Chris!) could do the surgery now, because the Lord will be controlling whatever hands are there! (but I think I'll opt or the brain surgeons' hands anyway)
P.S. It is a public domain, so feel free to pass this email or website on to anyone who would be interested.
Dear Siestas- I ask please to lift my dearest friend: Celina Henderson- missionary from the Philippines in Prayer PLEASE- her family is under severe spiritual attack. Since leaving the US- the family has quickly fallen apart. Dad- is usurping his duties as leader, making the work more important than the health and well being of his family. She is under physical attack(as well as spiritual)- she has been very ill,because of nerves she is having a nervous breakdown! She has returned(USA) to take care of issues that they have been having with their bank. Moneys have been removed regularly from there account which has been hindering their finances. The older boys have become very angry towards their father- This family desperately needs a team of Prayer Warriors to cover them with prayer!!!Thank you My Sistas!I will keep you posted on What God is going to do!Your Siesta Angie Sellers
You all are mighty prayer warriors and to see the love of this community of believers who reach out to one another is touching and I thank you with all of my heart!!!
I am married to a man who loves me more than I ever thought possible. He is one of my greatest joys in life (not everyday now ladies, this is not a fairytale ) but for the most part.
We have been married for nine years and we have two lovely little girls. We are in the process of adopting, so we will add another one to our family when God's timing is perfect.
I am a certified teacher and love my gift of teaching. It was something I have always wanted to do since I was a wee little one. I also at the age of five wanted to be a missionary in a foreign country. This was because of a Sunday of kid's church, so I am a walking testimony of what a seed being planted in a young heart will do. I am skipping ahead so, let me go back.
My parents divorced when I was young, but my mother always made an effort to make a stable and secure home. She took us to church. One of my fondest moments is sitting with her and watching her worship the Lord. She remarried a godly man and we were all happy for years. She got cancer though and passed away when I was 12. I moved in with grandparents and they raised me.
After college and teaching, God provided a way for my hearts desire to come true. I went and lived in Paraguay for two years and taught English school. God's guidance and protection has never left me.
I returned home to the states, met my husband on the Internet (Just like the movie You've Got Mail, yeah, I lived for those moments when that recorded voice announced "You've Got Mail") and we married a year later.
I home school my girls K and 3rd. We are so thankful for our church and friends.
I jumped into this new world of blogging and love meeting godly women who have blogs.
Meeting so many of you in SA Texas was icing.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
This is so random, but desparate times call for desperate measures: Do you know of any siestas in Witchita, Kansas? My dear friend, who is very much a siesta at heart, moved there from NJ 9 months ago and has not had as much opportunity to build friendships there as she would like due to a string of health issues that her kids have had, along with her own morning sickness. She and her wonderful husband are such fabulous friends and my heart is breaking because I just received word that she fell last night and broke her shoulder and may need surgery.
Picture it: Relocated, no family nearby, 3 children ages 4,3 and 1, 8 months along and scheduled for a c-section right before Thanksgiving.
She is two days' drive or a $700 flight away from those of us here who would be there in her kitchen making dinner if we could reach it. I thought it might be time to call in the reserves. If you happen to know of anyone in that area who is the type to go to a strangers doorstep with flowers or a meal in hand, to just be an angel of mercy on our behalf, please let me know. More and more I am of the belief that it never hurts to ask. So many of His resources are ours for the asking!
Thank you for fostering this community of siestas. You just don't know what a remarkable blessing it has been!
Saturday, October 11, 2008
I praise Him as our Refuge, Restorer, Deliverer, Savior, our Reward, Delight, Friend, Intercessor, Creator, King of Kings and Lord of Lords, Almighty, Living Water, Bread of Life, the Word made flesh...Warrior, Provider, Healer...
I thank him that his mercies are new every morning, I praise Him for the beautiful sunrise this morning and for His everlasting love!!! I praise Him for meeting our needs today, for His Word, for prayer, His friendship!! He is our Everything!
What banquet of praise do you want to spread today?
Thursday, October 9, 2008
We have a Siesta who needs your help. She is a friend of mine and Holly's and she is writing an article on Scrapbooking. She doesn't know much about this subject and she needs your expertise. She needs to hear from you throughout this weekend because her article is due by Monday. PLEASE email Dori @ firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am so thankful that we have Siestas who will help one another in their time of need!!
I am curious to know which LPL conference you will be attending next year?
Have you purchased your ticket yet?
Will you be attending a Deeper Still event next year and which one?
I hope you are having a wonderful Thursday.
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
First we tried the Raspberry Lemonade Cake by Gayle. Oh, it is really good! In fact, my Chris said we should take the recipe with us to East Texas and make some for his mom and dad over the Thanksgiving holidays. His mom, Mary Ann, is an exceptional cook with choice taste buds, so this cake is just that good! We found that it tastes even better the second day. The blend of tart lemons and sweet raspberries is a wonderful flavor blend for the fall--a harvest sensation!
Sorry for my lack of professional food-photography. This is exactly why others took the pictures in the cookbook! But despite my lack of skill, it still is "very good eatin' that's right fittin'," as my Chris' family would say!
Then Tabor helped me make Tara in Georgia's Apple Crisp. As she writes in the cookbook, it is easy to make and the ingredients are the kind you can always keep on hand for a quick dessert for expected or unexpected friends. It was super yummy with vanilla ice cream on top--especially while the Apple Crisp was still hot. Mmmm...what a way to welcome fall!
Finally, we made Peaches 'n Cream Cheesecake from Debbie Elrod in Tennessee. I was intimidated at first by the fact that the pudding mix could not be instant. Then I got to the store and found it all by itself away from the instant pudding mixes. I guess in our fast-paced world, instant is the way we tend to go!
This dessert is super rich and creamy. I loved the blend of flavors. It is definitely the best kind of dessert on a cool fall Sunday afternoon, like it is today here in Colorado. My Chris, who is a Texas boy through and through, said it needs 1/2 c. sugar in the crust part. But you have to realize he grew up on "swate" tea and plum pie--both of which have enough sugar for a coma to come on.
Would you like a cookbook? I have 85 ready right now...and will order more, as needed. Email me at chrishollysmith at msn dot com, if you are interested. So far we have given $2,165 towards clean water wells for children, and I have already set aside another $165 towards the next gift to Life Outreach International in honor of Beth Moore and the whole staff at Living Proof Ministries.
Also, I have 5 cookbooks from the first printing that have pages which are slightly damaged on the edges (pictured below). If you'd like to be entered to win one of these "seconds," you may enter my Grace Upon Grace Giveaway here at my blog.
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
I’m 23 and, if you have ever heard my accent, you already know I’m from Tennessee. When I was 18, I “accidentally” started a ministry for girls in our local public school system. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing and, five years later, I can’t exactly say that I know what I’m doing now!
What I do know is that God has gotten a hold of my feeble attempt at ministry and transformed it into something better than I could have ever imagined or dreamed. That little thing that I started five years ago now reaches hundreds of girls at 10 public schools each week. The program tends to draw in “unchurched” girls, which is VERY exciting to a girl like me. We get the opportunity to start from the very basics and build from there. We serve girls from the time they’re in 3rd grade on up through 12th grade, so I’ve had the chance to learn how to minister to girls at all different stages of their lives.
When I’m not working in our fabulous office, I’m probably playing with my two puppies – Snuggles and Cuddles. Not only do they get constant love from the college girls who work in our office but they also get to visit the girls in our programs each week. Needless to say, these two are spoiled rotten.
If I wasn’t doing ministry, I’d like to be a personal assistant OR a Shamu trainer at Sea World. I have this weird fascination with Shamu – I watch his webcam all the time!
I’m as single as a slice of cheese, but that’s okay with me. I write a lot about wanting to be married, have kidlets, etc. on my blog because I do want to do all those things. But I am convinced in God’s perfect timing and know that my being single at this point in my life frees me up to do so much more for Him.
And, lest you think I’m lonely, I should tell you that I have a wonderful Imaginary Boyfriend. He shows up at just the right time, most often with a glass of Sunny Delight for me. I know it’s hard, but please try to keep your jealousy in check.
Sunday, October 5, 2008
Melinda's friend, Pat Layton, the founder of A Woman's Place Ministries, wrote a study over 20 years ago called Surrendering the Secret.
This is from Melinda's blog:
With first-hand experience, she intimately understands the fear and uncertainty that surrounds women, post-abortion. After she was saved, she looked for material to help her and others heal, but there was none. So, she and God wrote a study that was used for 20 years at her crisis pregnancy center. This year, Surrendering the Secret was released in DVD form by Lifeway, in response to the thousands of hurting women that flooded the altar for prayer in this area, after each of their large events.
Do you know that one in every three women has had an abortion?
In fact, 43% of women of child-bearing age have this secret. And I don't use the term "secret" lightly. While there is certainly a multitude of unbelieving women out there that tote this secret sadness in their hearts, there are as many BELIEVING women - FORGIVEN, SAVED WOMEN in YOUR CHURCH - who are walking around unhealed. Why? Because they are afraid to surrender their secret.
Part of the email from Melinda:
I've decided to start a giveaway, on Monday, October 5th, and close it on Sunday, October 11th. I'll announce the winners on Monday, the 12th.
Again, this is the giveaway:
Five (5) Surrendering the Secret DVD Leader Kits
Twelve (12) Surrendering the Secret Member Books PER leader kit.
I am also going to give each person two chances to enter:
1 - Leave a comment
2 - Link to the giveaway from their blog and leave a second comment with the link.
Patty now: Girls, I can say that we had a close family member who had an abortion years ago and this family member is not saved but I know she struggles from this choice more so than I think she realizes. Does this keep her from coming to God? I don't know, but I do know satan is all about heaping shame upon us and guilt and God is a God of forgivness and healing and restoration.
This would be a much needed ministry in our churches and you have a chance to win one of these kits if you head on over to Melinda's blog and sign up. Please pass the word around and share this with the leaders of your church.
You can also invite Pat Layton to speak to your women or train leaders in your church.
I will end with what Melinda shared at the end of her email:
The Lord brought to mind the five loaves that were given to feed the crowd, and with that offering, He multiplied them to feed thousands, with leftovers besides (Mark 6:40-44). I'm believing God to do the same with this offering of 5 kits; that He will multiply them and feed TENS of thousands and MORE with the nourishment only He can provide.
Thank you, again, for joining me. There are SO MANY OTHERS whose hearts will thank you, too.
Thank you sweet Siestas for helping and supporting this ministry and for praying!!
Friday, October 3, 2008
Hi! This is Karen, one of your siestas from Hartselle, Al. We have quite a prayer request here in our town. A 24 year old woman, Lauren Rushen, suffered a stroke 2 weeks ago today. She is in NICU at Huntsville Hospital. She and her family touch many, many people in our community. We are keeping up with her progress on a blog at Caring Bridge. www.caringbridge.org Once on the website, you can search for Lauren by her name. The situation is very grave, and I just thought that maybe you could share this with our siestas because I know what amazing prayer warriors are on the Siesta blog! Well, I could go on and on about this, but I won't. I'm sure you can word this much better than I'm doing, but I believe the more people praying for her, the better. Thank-you,Karen
Urgent Prayer Request
My friend's daughter, Charity (29 years old) who lives outside New Orleans, LA has been diagnosed with a heart valve condition only correctable by surgery (so they say) as the valve is twisted. The issue with the doctors is they have not found any heart surgeons who have performed this particular procedure before. Please pray God's will be done, either Holy Spirit & God intervention of straightening out the valve or the right surgeon who can take the case & perform the surgery.
Thank you for your prayers. Please send this request out to all your prayer warriors.
Engrafted by His Grace--
Thursday, October 2, 2008
In keeping with our Christmas Exchange....a sweet friend bought me two cds, one for myself and one to give away. Travis Cottrell's Christmas cd. SO, leave us a comment here and you will be entered for this giveaway. This giveaway will run through October with the winner announced on 10-30-08.
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
"And you have been to how many of these??" he asked.
I picked the Mississippi Sin Dip submitted by Melanie (Big Mama). Everyone in our church home group loved it! It was a score! I think the bacon bits made this rich dip go over the goal line for sure.
What would you take to a tailgate party? Any great finds in the cookbook this week? Let us know in the comments!