Friday, January 22, 2010

resting in god's word...

i have been wanting to post this for days and finally have the time tonight. i am not sure if any of you watch the world wide telethon with all the stars tonight on CNN or if you even think about haiti now that it is slowly fading from the headlines, but for me, my heart is still broken. i still shed a tear or twenty or two hundred each day when i read or see the stories coming out of haiti. i still wake each morning and pray for this nation, for the orphans, for the sick, for the thirsty, for the hungry, and for the aid that desperately needs to make it to each of these. sooooo, tonight i wanted to share these scriptures that we read last sunday in our worship service at church as we prayed for the people of haiti. we prayed for peace among the incredible fear and loss that they are experiencing. we prayed for ben and katie, who are faithfully serving these broken people and sharing the love of jesus christ while doing so. we prayed that in the midst of all this chaos that god would be glorified. that the people of haiti would see that HE is a bigger than an earthquake and that they can find refuge in Him. these are the scriptures that were read and these are god's truths that continue to resonate within my heart...

"The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble." {Psalm 9: 9}

"Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea. God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble." {Psalm 46: 1-2}

"Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me, for in you my soul takes refuge. I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed." {Psalm 57:1}

"Hear my cry, O God; listen to my prayer. For you have been my refuge, a strong tower against the foe. I long to dwell in your tent forever and take refuge in the shelter of your wings." {Psalm 61:1-4}

"For he has not despised or disdained the suffering of the afflicted one; he has not hidden his face from him but has listened to his cry for help." {Psalm 22:24}

"He raises the poor from the dust and lifts the needy from the ash heap…" {Psalm 113: 7}

"Surely he will save you from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday." {Psalm 91: 3-6}

"Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified… for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you." 
{Deuteronomy 31:6}

"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world…"
{James 1:27}

"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another..."
{John 13: 34-35}

"Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." {Romans 8: 35- 39}

these truths written thousands of years ago seem as though they were written for such a time as this and remind me of how big, how all-knowing, how unfathomable, and how incredible god is! he IS in control of this and everything else in this world. he IS big enough, strong enough, and absolutely able to bring peace, relief, and miracles to haiti and to all of his creation. 

please continue to pray for this nation, for all those that are there to serve, heal, and love these broken people, and for the LORD to be glorified in every detail of it.

Friday, January 15, 2010

ben and katie in haiti...

i have been a bit paralyzed the last several days since learning about the earthquake in haiti. i am constantly checking facebook for updates from ben and katie. cnn is on the tv anytime my children are not in the room. and i find myself crying and praying for this nation and for my dear friends who are there. sure meals still make it to the table and i still play with my kids, but the images i have seen and the status updates i have read are always present in my mind. i have been praying constantly for the people and for all those who will go to rescue, heal, serve, and restore.

ben and katie

ben and katie have been able to update their blog about their experiences over the past 3 days. if you have a moment, please visit their blog, read their stories, and pray. pray for ben and katie, pray for the children they are serving, pray for the relief that is coming, pray for peace, pray that god would make himself known in haiti and that the people of haiti will find refuge HIM.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

with a heavy heart...

i write this post tonight. i am in prayer for the people of haiti and our dear friends, ben and katie. just 2 weeks ago they moved to this country to teach, serve, and share gods love in the poorest nation in the western hemisphere. little did we know that tonight they would be waiting with 50 of their students still waiting for their parents to pick them up and wondering what their next hours, days, and weeks will be like. please take a moment and pray for our friends, for the people of haiti, for all those that will come to their aid, and for god to be glorified even through this horrible tragedy.

if you want to read more about ben and katie and their journey you can click here.

Monday, January 4, 2010

i've been inspired..

by the pioneer woman...
i got her cookbook for christmas and can't stop making her yummy comfort food. every recipe sounds delicious, and those that i have tried have not disappointed me a bit! not really helping with the new year's goal of eating healthy, but there is always next week to start on that right! ;)

and the movie julie & julia...
over the holidays i also finally saw the movie. it was so great and inspired me to start cooking again. i really do love it, just have to make myself go to the grocery store and find things that excite me. i am going to attempt some julia recipes soon! :)

so with those two inspirations this blog entry was born... a recap of all the pw dishes i have cooked up and my opinions of each.

the pw cookbook is one of the best cookbooks i have ever received. just like on her blog (which is fabulous, if you are one of the last people that don't read it!) she takes pictures throughout the cooking process. so not only do you have a picture of the final product, but what it should look like along the way!! so helpful, at least to me!!

in the last week i have made... (sorry i have no pictures, i never dreamed i would write a blog post about all this cookin')

simple, perfect chili-- i would say the title sums up the dish perfectly. i made it last night since it was cold and we were just bein' lazy watching football. my kids, my husband, and i all gobbled it up! mark and jack liked their with rice, while o and i preferred ours with some crunchy fritos.

twice-baked potatoes-- yummmm! they were so good!! we had these new year's eve at the lake with family and friends. there were no complaints and several people went back for seconds! that's success to me. pw (pioneer woman) says they freeze really well, so i think i might make them again soon and freeze a big ole batch so i can pull them out and have an instant side for our weeknight meals.

cheese grits-- mmm, mmm, good! our good friends, ivy and drew, came to the lake new year's day to hang out. ivy loves to cook and she brought her pw cookbook, so we decided to whip up a few items for dinner. we had so much fun planning and cooking together. the grits were a side dish to our dinner and they were good. mark and ivy had some leftovers for breakfast the next morning and said they got better overnight! :)

steak with whiskey cream sauce-- delish!! i actually made this two nights in a row. the first was new year's eve. followed the recipe, but added some mushrooms. so good. no leftovers!! :) then drew and ivy came and we decided to do steak again, so we HAD to make some more sauce. this time no mushrooms, but just as tasty!! i can't seem to make it as thick as in the book, but it is still tasty!!

homemade ranch-- is ranch ever bad? the correct answer is no, but this ranch was oh so good! we served it over a wedge salad and with the jalapeno poppers. it was also consumed with some tortilla chips because it was that good!

olivia cheese bread-- good if you like olives. honestly, this one has been my least favorite recipe, but it was still good, especially if you like olives.

bbq jalapeno poppers-- perfect!! perfect amount of heat, sweetness, cheese, and salt from the bacon. and absolutely divine when dunked in the homemade ranch. these might take the prize for "best recipe tried so far"! so, so good!!

and the "cookin' pw style" hasn't stopped! on tonight's menu- chicken spaghetti. it is already made up and ready to pop in the oven closer to dinner time. the few tastes i have had are really good. looking forward to dinner tonight.

Friday, January 1, 2010

2009: a year in review

here is our year together, well some of the highlights or pictures that made me smile as i looked back over all our pictures from 2009. i loved doing this last year, so i guess now it is becoming a new year's tradition.


our family discovered that we love baylor basketball and we went to several games!

olivia and lilli gave themselves a "mani & pedi" with markers! so pretty! :)

mark and i went to mexico for a little r & r with some of our most favorite friends. such a great trip!! (i want to be there right now!)

my parents hosted "dinner with rico" at the farm and it was a whole family affair to get it set up and ready for the 50 guests that came. this is rico the donkey. isn't he so cute??


my first attempt at trying to be "bakerella." it was a fun night and i am so glad ivy was there to help make these adorable chick pops.

mark and the kids at his "good-bye" lunch before he left for papua new guinea trip. what an incredible opportunity he had to get to travel to that part of the world.

olivia FINALLY rides the jet ski, and LIKES it!! :)
and at the end of the month we celebrated jack's 1st birthday in our backyard with family. so much fun to celebrate him and his first year as a part of our family.

mark and i got to celebrate turning 30 and our 8th anniversary in san francsico..
and napa valley. such a fun trip!
jack discovers his love for books (and making a mess in his room when no one is looking)!

jack and i finish our summer of mondays at little gym. i loved having time with just jack each week. we also got to spend time with mari and kenzie which was great too!!


back to school! olivia and jack at "meet the teacher" checking out jack's classroom. what a blessing their school has been for each of them and for our family. we all adore their teachers!!

baylor football season was in full swing and we made regular trips to waco to support the bears!! as a bonus to cheering on the bears we got to stay with our friends, the herridges, almost every weekend. "hotel herridge" has the best accommodations around. :)

olivia and i took a mommy/daughter trip out west to see our precious friends. it was the best weekend filled with hugs, smiles, laughter, and lots of girl time!! :)

baylor football season and the thanksgiving weekend ended with the baylor/tech game at cowboy stadium. we tailgated before the game with the bowlins and fifers. good times!!


a white christmas in dallas, texas!!!

as i reflect on the year i am amazed at all that we were able to do and all that we have been blessed with in our lives. i thank god for every single "juicy detail" and can't wait to see what is ahead for our little family in 2010! happy new year!!