Monday, November 17, 2008
Thursday, November 13, 2008
1 - 8oz Cream Cheese
1 - Cup Sugar
2 - Ripe Bananas
2 - Eggs
2 - Cups Bisquick
Cream the cream cheese and sugar; add in bananas one at a time; add in eggs one at a time; add in Bisquick until moist. Place in bread pan and bake at 350 for approximately 1 hour (60 min). Wonderful warm with a cup of hot cocoa. Enjoy!
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Thursday, June 26, 2008
We used a butterfly kit and watched the caterpillars metamorphosize into butterflies. This was release day.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Friday, May 2, 2008
Everyone is excited...except my husband. It really is bittersweet to go out and visit family and friends and have him stay here at home. Truthfully, he will be very busy with work, church and other projects that need to be tended to, and we wouldn't have seen him a whole lot, but we would have been here when he finally did get home each day. My hope is that the time will pass quickly for him. I can't believe April is gone and May is here already...maybe May will slip by the same way for him. All in all, your prayers would be appreciated.
I will be posting here at the pantry while I am away...and maybe even more prolifically than usual with extra eyes and ears around at Grandma and Grandpas. I have lots of posting ideas started and notes written. The long plane ride should help to flesh some of them out. I hope you all have an enjoyable weekend ahead!
Thursday, April 10, 2008
- 1 1/3 cups whole wheat flour
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 cup milk
- 2 eggs, separated
- 4 Tablespoons (1/4 cup) canola or vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Combine flour, salt, sugar, and cinnamon in a small bowl; set aside. Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form; set aside. Beat egg yolks well; add in milk and oil. Add dry ingredients to egg, milk, oil mixture. Beat until smooth. Fold in egg whites. Sift baking powder over mixture and blend in quickly. Bake in hot waffle iron. Below is my waffle iron, I get 10 waffles out of this recipe (2 at a time, as you can see). Top with your favorite fruit and powdered sugar for a light, fresh taste, or go all out with butter and syrup!
Friday, March 28, 2008
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
As well, I have been working through my little decorating conundrum. I want to add a little sophistication to our living room and bedroom, but have very little to spend out of pocket. Time will tell what this little mind will come up with. For now, I have been encouraged that things aren't really as bad as I might have first thought. Right away, I realized I really love my eat-in kitchen. We spend a lot of time in this room, schooling, eating, cooking, baking, coloring, play-dohing, coloring, card making etc. It is nice and bright in the morning and cheery throughout the day. I am also not concerned about anything getting ruined in here since everything is already paint-chipped or well worn...in a good way. One room down, five to go in our six room abode. Kids rooms, they love them, flowers in one and blue camo in the other, check and check. Three down, three to go. Bathroom, not much to do in here except maybe make a new shower curtain. I love the one we have, but it is getting a little worn after five years and three moves. So, maybe a new curtain, and two rooms to go. I am left with the master bedroom, and the living room...not so overwhelming now! I feel so much better. I also noticed, something I knew in the cobwebbed places of my mind, that I have some amount of red and green in every room save the blue camo bedroom. This should help in coordinating as well as create a flow throughout the home. Isn't this what those fancy-shmancy decorators recommend? I think I have one more week of brain, paper, and pile focus and then on to the creative pursuits I love: crafting, baking, sewing, decorating, and posting! Look for something fun and exciting next Friday...or sooner if I can manage it in.
Thursday, March 13, 2008
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Thursday, March 6, 2008
I like to keep a running list of interests to research and endeavors to pursue. I add to this list constantly and cross items off as I feel I have exhausted them for the time being, or they are no longer interesting. I reflect on my list in December and January, mostly due to the amount of time spent indoors, and try to prioritize it for the upcoming year. It is already March and I have been doing some research on the topics listed below. As you can see from some of the areas of study...I am focused on the little one in my womb. My formal studies were centered on public health and this is always a topic of interest to me. I don't list it since it is a constant. In no particular order:
- cake decorating
- cloth diapering
- organic gardening
- homemade baby food
- whole foods cooking
- baking bread: flour mill, bread machine
- crafts to make
- money making tools/adventures
What interests are you pursuing in this season of your life...or do you have any great links to any of the items I am looking into?
Thursday, February 21, 2008
We can have perseverance, but not be content, never fully resting in what God has given us for this time, leading to discouragement with ourself, others, and ultimately God. We may continue to persevere through what we feel is another roadblock not considering it was placed there by God so that we may cease from striving for a time and find contentment in Him alone.
For each of us there has probably come a time when the Lord has brought his words found in Psalm 46:10 "Be still and know that I am God" to our minds. In the original language, this truly means "enough, know I am God." When I am cooking with my children, we're measuring items out, and I tell them "that's enough," if they were to keep adding more the whole dinner could end up tasting horrible. Now, I do understand a little more basil could have been just the thing to make it outstanding, but depending on what I am making, too much salt or baking soda could ruin it completely. That may be a poor analogy, this one might be better understood. If you are a bread baker, consider overworking your dough and ending up with a tougher result than desired. It might still taste OK, but it wouldn't be as satisfying to your palate. When you hear the word "enough" from the Lord, it is a good time to stop persevering for a season and look to rest in all that God has for you right now.
The other side of the issue I have found as I have been meditating on this leads to being content, but not persevering, becoming complacent, ceasing to strive toward the goal Christ has for us in the name of contentment. While previously noted, perseverance can lead to being overly driven, in the same manner I think being overly content may very well lead to laziness. This may mainfest itself in a variety of areas in our life just as well as overdoing it can. While one may be overzealous in their study of the word and neglect their family's needs, another may be overly complacent in their spiritual journey and not seek out the Lord for direction in their daily tasks unless a crises arises. While some are overinvolved in church activities and ministries, others are so content with the way things are that they fail to engage in the ministry of their own children who are right under their nose.
It is not my intent to inflict shame on anyone here. I find myself having hit both extremes at times and am currently seeking the Lord for balance and what He desires for me to stock my pantry with. While the saying doesn't really apply to everything in my pantry, such as love and compassion...too much of a good thing, can really be too much. I think too much perseverance or too much contentment could make for a string of unsavory suppers around here.
What are your thoughts on finding balance in these two areas in your own home? How do you "run with perseverance the race" (Heb 12:1) and still be "content in any and every situation" (Phil 4:12)?
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
My new and exciting edition to our home...is my new bookshelf for the kitchen! Mainly needed to house homeschool curriculum and everyday arts and crafts supplies, which have previously been located in various places around the kitchen with no real home. The end of the dining table and the top of the refrigerator can now(hopefully) remain clutter free. My next task is to load the shelves!
Friday, February 15, 2008
Thursday, February 14, 2008
And now, dear lady, I am not writing you a new command but one we have had from the beginning. I ask that we love one another. And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love.
Disclaimer: This is what we do in our home...you will have your own convictions of what you do in your home and you will answer to the Lord for that. However, we will also answer to the Lord for how we have raised our own children, and this is the command we have been given. For our children, we are continually training them to obey "right away, all the way, with a good attitude everyday." This is the mantra at our home when someone isn't obeying as they should according to the word of God. It goes something like this: Little Byers isn't obeying fully and so one parent will say: "How do we obey?" and then they will respond with the above quote. Most of the time there is also discipline to go along with said words...for they did not obey fully.
It is the same in our lives, when we do not obey fully, there is discipline from the Lord. We may not see the consequences right away for our decisions, but it will come. We may even feel that it was a small disobedience, nothing of magnitude. However, consider this, when your children disobey in the small things is it not the same sin as when they disobey in the big things....and if they do not choose to obey in the small things, why would they choose to obey in the big things? If, as the scripture states, love is to obey His commands, and we are to love at all times, then when is it OK to not obey?
Here, another scripture comes to mind from Romans 6:16:
Don't you know that when you offer yourselves to someone to obey him as slaves, you are slaves to the one whom you obey—whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness?
Now, just so you know, and lest you think I am not keen to this in my own life, I am writing this post as a reminder to myself as well. For I need to continually remind myself to whom I am bound, and I surely want it to be the Lord Jesus Christ!
Let's get back to the mantra of obedience in my home. Many of us understand how to obey "right away," (when you're told), and even how to obey "all the way," (doing fully what you're told), but many of us do not do it "with a good attitude, everyday." Now this may seem silly to you, but we require this of our children out of the command to "honor your father and mother" and out of "treating others with respect." If our children do what we ask of them and do it when we ask it, but complete the task grumbling and pouting...have they fully obeyed? They may have completed the task, but they have sinned in honoring their father and mother and in treating others with respect. How is it not the same for us as we respond to our Heavenly Father, Our Loving God when he asks something of us and we do it begrudgingly? I can find no difference. As well, I have found that the Lord provides instruction and promise in the Proverbs, to no surprise, regarding the cheerful heart (in other words...your good attitude):
Proverbs 15:13: A merry heart makes a cheerful countenance,
But by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken.
Proverbs 15:15 All the days of the oppressed are wretched,
but the cheerful heart has a continual feast.
Proverbs 17:22: A cheerful heart is good medicine,
but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.
As you go about your tasks, for the day, week, month and year, it is my prayer that you, and I, will choose to love our Lord and others as he has commanded, through obedience to Him with a cheerful heart. Even when the task is great, when we keep the essential obedience stocked in our pantry and add the good-to-have cheeful heart, we can expect the promise of Proverbs 15:15 and delight in the continual feast.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Monday, February 11, 2008
As I kick off this series of essentials and good-to-haves in my pantry of the soul, I must start with an essential Christ refers to as "the most important one" in Mark 12:29. There is a lesson in here I can frequently overlook and need to focus on retrieving for my pantry. I'm sure many of you have referred to this verse over and again and could quote it. I promise I am not repeating cliches...please read to the end for the challenge. In the NIV it reads:
One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, "Of all the commandments, which is the most important?"
"The most important one," answered Jesus, "is this: 'Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord in one.
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.' The second is this: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no commandment greater than these."
Now the first commandment, regarding loving the Lord, seems so easy to me at times. I don't mean in effect that it is easy to die to self and seek to put Him first at all times, but He, the Lord of my salvation, has my best interests at heart. He desires that I become more and more like Him.
On the other hand...loving my neighbor as myself...well, this is where I can really struggle at times. I know we have all heard it before, and experienced it ourselves, how easy it is to love those who love you back. How easy it is to smile at someone when they are smiling at you, and greet them respectfully, and truly want to do something special for them. With these neighbors, I have no trouble whatsoever. A few other neighbors, the unbathed, the unkempt, the overly raucous at times...even they seem to be easy to reach out to in love. For these neighbors are often overlooked and people step aside when they see them. I easily desire to help meet their needs in love.
The neighbors I have trouble loving, are those who seem really put together, yet really rub people the wrong way. Their tongue is full of arrows and their demeanor is staunch and unloving. They have no need of any material item, yet the need in their heart is great. No one would think twice of me passing them by without a word, but is that what the Lord has called us to? They are still a neighbor, right? Well then, they are not excluded in this command. I think with these type of neighbors it would be as asset to arm your pantry stash of Love with one of the good-to-haves: Compassion. Look into your own, my own, life and realize how many times the Lord reached out to you and you didn't respond. Does this person not derserve the same? Reach out in love: with a smile, a kind word, a special gesture of kindness, spurn the arrows and continue on. Over time, even if you don't see it on the outside, I'm sure you will have made a difference, through the love of Christ, in your neighbor.
picture from Allposters.com
Thursday, February 7, 2008
Awhile back I was visiting a site entitled Cooking with Alicia. I'm not quite sure what led me there, but while looking around I noticed her section on "the pantry." Intrigued, I read her thoughts on what she felt made up "the complete pantry." Here is what she writes:
If you cook regularly, there are certain ingredients and tools that you should always have on hand. I call these "essentials".
Beyond essentials, there are the "good-to-haves". Good-to-haves will make your life easier. The essentials plus the good-to-haves will give you what I call "the complete pantry".
With "the complete pantry", you will always have something on hand to whip up a meal on the spur of the moment. The complete pantry will also make your regular shopping easier, since you'll already have a lot of items on-hand.
And having the right tools is always a big help. As my fourth grade teacher, Mrs. Vining, used to tell us: "A worker's work is only as good as his tools." It was the only class where we were allowed to sharpen our pencils whenever we needed to!
You don't need to buy all of the tools or ingredients at once, of course. Buy them as you need them for a particular recipe, and if you keep cooking different things, you will build up to your complete pantry in a gradual and affordable way.
Since reading this wonderful explanation of a complete pantry, my thoughts have been...I want one of those. But I don't mean a pantry in the traditional sense. A traditional pantry is thought of as a cupboard or closet in which one stores their provisions to be ready when meal preparations are at hand. Of course this is made easier when both the essentials and good-to-haves are in abundant supply and when variety is available.
The kind of pantry I am referring to is the pantry of my soul. The place in which I store all of the essentials and good-to-haves that the Lord has bestowed upon me. A place with enough room to hold all that I need and yet not too cluttered to the extent items are hidden and spoil before they are used. Where there are staple items, such as faith and love, obedience and perseverence, as well as something for a special guest, perhaps a specific word of encouragement or outpouring of empathy. I want to "be mature, and complete, not lacking anything," as in James 1:4 (NIV). I desire for my pantry to be full and complete.
Every few days, I will be expanding on what I believe the essentials and good-to-haves are that could make up my complete pantry. Of course, as I have stated, the Lord is the one handing out the provisions, so I will cheerfully accept what is given, even if it isn't on my list! Please, won't you join me? I am looking forward to the Lord "[making me] complete in every good work to do His will, working in [me] what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen." Hebrews 13:21 (NKJV)