Tuesday, December 30, 2008

for Baby

We bought our Baby a car seat today - and now have what we need to bring her home from the hospital. Come when she will, we can bring her home!!! In a way, knowing that it is very reassuring for me. : )

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Wonderful Love

Yesterday I found an article titled "His Love Stories", by Elisabeth Adams.

"The Bible tells us that Jesus is the Word made flesh. I like to think that, in a small way, each of us is also the Word made flesh; that each of us has a story in which the kindness of God is made visible to the world. Think how clear His kindness is in your salvation story. And when you listen to the salvation stories of others, don't you see how unique is the way He captures each of our hearts?
"That's why my favorite love stories are true ones. In fact, I've probably read or heard the stories of nearly 150 Christian couples, each one as unique as a fingerprint. Some couples called it "courtship," some called it "dating," and some met and married long before the terms acquired their present meanings. God's kindness is evident in them all."

It's a good article, reminding us of God's creativity in pursuing and wooing us. After I read it I started to think of the many ways that God is still wooing me - because one of the wonderful things about the Almighty is that He is our Eternal Lover, never content to let our relationship with Him to grow stale. And not just the ways He woos me, but those around me.
It may not always feel loving or look beautiful in the moment - just as in any long term relationship there are periods of pain - but looking back I can see that He has always been loving, always been faithful to care for my heart.
What a wonderful God.

preparing for our little one

I've been working on another sweater for Baby, this one a little bit bigger than the first. The pattern is from The Expectant Knitter, and the yarn is a merino and bamboo blend. All that's left are the sleeves, and putting on our Little One, of course.

Monday, December 22, 2008


Scattered flurries early this morning...otherwise becoming mostly sunny. Highs 15 to 20. Southwest winds 10 to 15 mph. Wind chill values as low as 20 below this morning.
taken from the weather underground website

Currently the temperature is 6.3*, but with the windchill it's -1*. This CA girl is feeling the cold!!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

advent: peace

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Saturday, December 13, 2008

prepare Him room II

I just started listening to a series of Advent sermons titled "Prepare Him Room". The first sermon focused on humility, on us humbling ourselves to make room in our hearts for wonder at Christ's coming. The amazement and glorious wonder of God made flesh is so easily eclipsed by "us" and "me"; when we aren't lauding each other - or ourselves - we seem to be criticizing or condemning, pitying, loathing. It all adds up to the same thing - being self-centered rather than God-centered.
I'm looking forward to listening to the rest of the sermons as they are posted, and also pondering "preparing room" and how it looks in my life, right now.

Friday, December 12, 2008

prepare Him room

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Saturday, December 06, 2008

Saturday morning in December

This, plus reading Luke 3 and the weekend edition of NPR, has been my morning so far. Oh - I made some fudge, too. It was a good and cozy way to spend my snowy morning.

** evening update **

So, I put up my feet for a while and then got antsy, so I made pumpkin banana nut muffins and the dough for soft and spicy gingerbread cookies. And worked on the dishes that had piled up. :) After all of which my wonderful husband came home (to an apartment that smelled like heaven) and told me I needed to put my feet up again while he, tired though he was, got something together for dinner. I love that man.

Thursday, December 04, 2008


This morning I heard DC Talk's "In The Light", and it has stuck with with me all day. It keeps turning over in my mind and heart in conjunction with, The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwelt in the land of the shadow of death, upon them has the light shined (Isa. 9:2).

Ponder the Light this Christmas.

This then is the message which we have heard of Him, and declare unto you, that God is Light, and in Him is no darkness at all.
If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth;
But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.
- I John 1:5-7

Monday, December 01, 2008

welcome December!

It is the first day of December, and to celebrate we have snow flurries today. Fluffy little bits of ice flying through the air.

Friday, November 28, 2008

i love him

Baby Smillie Update

pre-birth portrait, Nov. 7

This morning John and I went to visit the midwife again, this time to get my blood tested for GD. If all goes well, I won't get a call on Monday - if they call back, I get to go again and sit in the office for four hours while they take blood samples to re-test.

The midwife said that Baby is currently breach with the head on my right (which explains why I have been feeling the strongest of the movements on my left side), and that the little one is growing rapidly. Everything still seems normal, and we are both healthy. John is doing quite well, too, in case you are wondering.

The only other news is that we are now on the two-week appointment schedule - I have an appointment every two weeks so that the ladies at the office can keep and eye on me (us). Baby will be here soon!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

giving thanks

this year we have much to be grateful for, because as the psalmist said,
"...the LORD has dealt bountifully with you."
-psalm 116:7

Saturday, November 22, 2008

at Dad and Mom's ...

- more to follow -

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

BEST cinnamon roll recipe

Really. I have never tasted a cinnamon roll recipe like this. And I have made quite a few different recipes, too! The rolls are huge - one is plenty adequate - and super moist. The centers, according to John, are still the best part: all gooey and dripping with filling. Before this recipe I had never used cream cheese in my glaze. I don't think I will ever make roll glaze without cream cheese again. It is SOOOO good!

Ultimate Cinnamon Buns
from Cook's Country - Dec./Jan. 2009

3/4 cup milk, heated to 110*
2 heaping tsp yeast
3 eggs, room temp.
4 1/4 cups flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
12 Tbsp (3/4 cup) butter, cut into chunks and softened

1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 Tbsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
4 Tbsp butter, softened

4 oz cream cheese, softened
1 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1. for the dough: adjust oven rack to middle position and heat to 200*. When oven reaches 200*, shut off. Line a 9"x13" pan with foil, allowing excess to hang over pan edges. Grease foil and a medium bowl.

2. whisk milk and yeast in liquid measuring cup until yeast dissolves, then whisk in eggs. In bowl of stand mixer fitted with dough hook [or by hand], mix flour, cornstarch, sugar, and salt until combined. With mixer on low, add warm milk mixture in steady stream and mix until dough comes together, about 1 minute. Increase speed to medium and add butter, one piece at a time, until incorporated. Continue to mix [or knead by hand] until dough is smooth and comes away from sides of bowl, about 10 minutes. Turn dough out onto smooth surface and knead to form a smooth, round ball. Transfer dough to prepared bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and place in warm oven. Let rise until double in size, about 2 hours.

3. for the filling: Combine brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a small bowl. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough into a 18" square, spread with butter and sprinkle evenly with filling. Starting with the edge nearest you, roll the dough into tight cylinder, pinch lightly to seal seam, and cut into 8 pieces. Transfer pieces, cut side up, to prepared pan. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in warm spot until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
4. for the glaze and to bake: Heat oven to 350*. Whisk cream cheese, milk, vanilla and powdered sugar in a medium bowl until smooth. Discard plastic wrap and bake buns until deep golden brown and filling melted, 35 to 40 minutes. Transfer to wire rack and top buns with 1/2 cup glaze; cool 30 minutes. Using foil overhang, lift buns from pan and top with remaining glaze. Serve.

baby shoes

dahlia infant shoes

"To wear dreams on one's feet is to begin to give reality to one's dreams."
Roger-Henri Vivier
photo courtesy of smallbeans

Saturday, November 08, 2008


Last Sunday our pastor preached from Philippians 4:10-13, emphasizing the encouragement and care that the Philippian church showed to Paul, as well as Paul's contentment.

I have been mulling the passage over all week.

The pastor didn't specifically challenge us to be more encouraging to each other, but my mind went there on its own.
I remembered Barnabas, who was called Joseph but renamed because he was so encouraging. He seems to have done it all in the background, as he is mentioned only a few times. In each instance he is helping others, encouraging them, spurring them to growth and maturity.
We, as the curch, are supposed to come along side each other; to exhort, yes, but also encourage. Each and every one of us are living in this fallen world, the one where the Prince of Darkness reigns (for now) and tries to steal our Joy. Not only are we as the Body called to spur each other on to "love and good works", but also to glory in Christ and our salvation, to bring glory to him, to worship in our ordinary moments, and to Joy.
There is a family in this church whose little girl went to Heaven a few weeks ago due to a medical emergency related to her cerebral palsy. How can we -I - come alongside them with encouragement?

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

we did ...

you can too.

Please do. Starbucks will even thank you with a free cup of coffee.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Maple Leaf Cookies

Maple Leaf Cookies from Martha Stewart Living, Nov. '08
makes about 8 dozen

3 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 ounces butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup light-brown sugar
1 egg yolk
3/4 cup maple syrup (not imitation)
1/3 cup sanding sugar

Sift flour and salt into a medium bowl. Beat butter and sugars until pale and creamy, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed and add egg yolk, then 1/2 cup maple syrup, beating well after each addition. Add flour mixture, and beat until just incorporated. Shape into 2 disks, wrap each in plastic, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours (or up to 2 days).

Roll out 1 disk of dough to 1/4-inch thickness on a sheet of lightly floured parchment. Place parchment with dough on baking sheet. Freeze until firm, about 15 minutes.

Coat baking sheets with cooking spray, line with parchment, and coat parchment. Cut out cookies from frozen dough using a 3 1/2-inch maple-leaf-shaped cutter and space 1 inch apart on sheets. Roll and cut scraps. Freeze cookies until firm, about 15 minutes.

Bake cookies in a pre-heated 325* oven until edges begin to turn golden, about 14 to 16 minutes. Transfer parchment with cookies to wire racks, and let cool for 5 minutes. Brush cookies with 2 tablespoons maple syrup, and sprinkle with 1/2 of the sanding sugar. Let cool. Repeat with remaining dough, syrup and sugar. (Cookies will keep for up to 2 days)

These are very delicious, and taste somewhere in between sugar cookies and maple sugar candy. And they smell incredibly good, too!It makes me wish that I could add a smell feature to the blog .... Perfect with a morning cup of coffee, or an afternoon cup of tea.

pictures from an october walk

:: a little "friend" we found ::

I love fall. I love it almost as much as I love spring.

I love the intensity of color, how inviting it is to take an evening walk, the sound of the leaves as they crunch underfoot. I love the cooler weather, the crispness. I love how the grey days make me want to bake and clean. Or snuggle up with a blanket and a book.

I love fall.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Friday, October 24, 2008

comfort food

I found a wonderful recipe for Old Fashioned Blueberry Pie the other day on Katie's blog. So good. Between the two of us it lasted a grand total of 26 hours. Our ice cream managed to disappear too. *blush*

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

bits from today

:: sweater for Baby ::

"Joseph of Arimathea, a prominent member of the Council, who was himself waiting for the kingdom of God, went boldly to Pilate and asked for Jesus' body."
- Mark 15:44

For some reason that phrase caught my attention this morning: he was known by the fact that he was awaiting the kingdom of God. Was he zealously waiting? Or was it just commonly known that Joseph from Arimathea was waiting for the kingdom of God?

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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

getting colder .......

For the past few nights the temperature has been dropping down into the mid 30's, so I have been bringing the plants in at night to keep them a little cozier. we don't have too many plants left from the summer, but the tomato plant has decided to give us an additional late crop and I really don't want the new tomatoes to freeze!

Monday, October 20, 2008


I found these adorable little booties made by frostingcouture just now, and they brought such a smile to my face that I wanted to share them with all of you. She makes each pair to order by hand, in sizes from 0 to 1 year.

Just picture a chubby little girl, her feet blooming with the sweetest blossoms ...

pictures by frostingcouture

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