Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Been a while and Vollmer Farms Blackberries

can't believe it's been so long since I blogged.  been both a lot and nothing going on all at the same time.

so let me start with something I've been doing over the past few weeks.  making jam.  blueberry, blackberry, strawberry, mixed berry.  first, though, I had to pick the berries.  blackberries are by far the easiest (when they come from a local organic farm).  tried picking wild ones but i'm going to say a big no to that one - I don't like briars!)

here are some of my shots. 


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Obsessing, Thinking, Wishing...

Obsessing over…Planning. Dates.  What if.  When? How? Why can't we find a church that keeps us coming back for more? Retiring. Homeschool preparations. Joining a pool for the summer.
Working on…
Staying focused (clearly not succeeding right now). Reading the Bible.
Thinking about…
Why my clothes don't fit anymore.  They are shrinking.  (perspective, right?) How to help people who need it.  How to give more than I have.
Surprising my mom with a trip to somewhere special from her childhood.  Hope the rain goes away for it!
Listening to…
You're already there by Casting Crowns
Just finished a coke and a sesame bar - and a relpax.  front coming through today = migraine.
money grew on trees.  less war and more peace.  people understood how important sustainable farming is!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Stationery card

Joyful Moments Religious Christmas Card
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Friday, October 12, 2012

roasted caulifower with bacon, mushrooms, and white cheddar cheese

this is TO DIE FOR! and pretty easy, too,

got the recipe from http://www.closetcooking.com/2012/10/roasted-cauliflower-and-aged-white.html and made my own changes.  if you don't follow closet cooking, you should.  emails go directly to your inbox about once a week or so - and his recipes are always delicious (and usually easy and with regular ingredients, too!)

start by cutting up 1 large head cauliflower - cut into florets - toss with 1 - 2 T of oil and roast at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes (they start turning brown - and stinking a little.  cauliflower is in the cabbage family so it has that smell.)
bechemel sauce: in a medium saucepan, add 3T butter and let it start to brown.  then add 3T of some kind of flour (i used rice flour).  mix with a fork or an egg beater and when that starts to brown, slowly add 1-1/2 cups of milk (i used 1 cup 1% milk and 1/2 cup half-and-half) using the egg beater to wisk away any lumps.  the first 1/2 cup will thicken what you already have in the pan, the last cup will become liquidey but will soon thicken.  add 1/4 tsp nutmeg, salt and pepper (i didn't measure), a dash of thyme, and a dash of onion powder - and then 4 oz of aged white cheddar cheese.  i did not shred mine, i just cut it into small squares.   i actually bought an 8 oz block and the conversion is 1 cup shredded = 4 oz on the block.  i did shred the last 4 oz and use it later... mix the sauce well and turn off the heat once the cheese is melted. it'll be pretty thick.
heat a skillet and add 1 T of oil and 8 oz chopped mushrooms (i buy mine pre-sliced, i just chopped them up a little more).   i added one of those 2 oz containers of real bacon bits (to skip the step of cooking bacon) to the skillet once the mushrooms wilted.  when it gets hot and all is sauted, then i added that to the bechemel sauce. 
when the cauliflower gets roasted, add that to the bechemel sauce too and stir gently to coat.  pour it in a baking dish (i used a medium sized one). i topped it with the remaining 4oz (shredded) aged white cheddar. 
bake in the oven for about 30 minutes on 350 degrees.  my cheese did not brown but it was all really bubbly.  it was DELICIOUS! 

Monday, October 1, 2012

Family Photos, Photographer included.

When it comes to family photos - whole family photos - it is hard to do it when you're the one holding the camera.  Honestly, I am rarely in photos.  Not only do I hate my photo being taken (it is so awkward - yes, I feel like you do), I also rarely like the outcome (too fat?  too white?  too me.).  I'm not a big fan of editing-to-the-point-you-change-the-appearance so making myself skinny on photoshop is out of the question.  However, my kids need to remember me right now as much as I need to remember them.  I wanted a photographer that could capture how much we love and care for each other, as well as make me look like a model. 

Like most folks seeking a service, I got online and started browsing through some local photographer's webpages.  I had two requirements - that it not be too expensive and that I recieve digital files so I can print myself.  Most folks want that these days anyway, right?  As a photographer, I really want people to print because in 30 years, you won't be able to see your images on a DVD (our kids may not even remember what they are).  I will print my photos for sure.  Even plan to make Christmas Cards with them!

This all reminded me of how important your website is - because that is how someone gets to know you and first impressions count!  From this, I plan to make some changes to my own (this) webpage. 

I also have a goal of using our in-closet clothes to make coordinating (not matching) outfits for our shoot.  OK, so maybe  can buy one or two things, but I want the majority of it to be in-house.  That is one thing I try to tell customers is to pull from what you have first.  Pick one or two things and then go from there.  We'll see what I come up with!

Last, I love photojournalistic style of photography.  I used to love posed shots.  However, when Holly was almost 1 and we were as broke as broke can get, my friend, Gretchen, graciously took of our family-of-four portraits for free.  I was hooked on the way she captured natural poses... interactions rather than poses.  I still treasure those photos.

I chose Sara Davis Photography to do our 2012 family photos.  She is out of Durham and I loved all the images she had on her website.  She was recommended by one of my biggest local inspirations, Ginny  Corbett Photography (who only does weddings).  I simply cannot wait. 

And, so my diet begins today. 30 day shred, here I come!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

i'm his biggest fan

hello.  thanks for calling.  please listen carefully as the menu options have changed.  the old menu was 1 for snappy, 2 for bossy, and 3 for what-do-you-mean-you-can't-read-my-mind... the new menu is 1 for forgiving, 2 for supportive, and 3 for i'm-so-proud-of-you-i-could-just-explode.  press 0 at anytime for the bottom line.

1. though my husband has always been a good man as long as i have know him (and he was good before that too, i just can't site specific instances), he has not always been active in church.  i haven't either.  but... this summer when my sister visited, we started going to church at her old church (we went our first time as a family-of-four with her).  i can't even begin to explain how life-changing something so simple has been.  i suppose that people that are inherently good may not realize why they are that way.  and, by going to church, my husband has seen the light inside of him - and it has only grown brighter.  where he was kind before, now he is even kinder because he knows that his God wants him to be that way.  where he was gentle before, he is now even gentlier because he knows that God wants him to be that way.  this has also helped him (and us) handle one small situation that has burdened us for years.  that'd be an issue of forgiveness.  i know things don't just happen instantly (for the most part), but over the last month i think the meaning of forgiveness - and the fact that we must forgive because God wants us to - has really sunk in.  praying about burdens such as this has really become a release.  (reminds me of that book about baggage - melissa, what is it called?  i still have it but it is at home so i can't think of the name right now.)  so anyway, it is so refreshing to have God at the forefront of our lives in our lives 7 days a week now.  Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. (Ephesians 4:31-32)

2. i had an opportunity a few weeks ago that would have meant big changes in our life.  rather than doing what i usually do - which is whatever i want to do, even if it involves our family - i solicited my husband for guidance and leadership on the matter.   “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but he who heeds counsel is wise” (Prov. 12:15).   this is probably my first time making an effort to not "lead myself" but to let nathaniel do what God intended of a husband, which is be the head of household.  he is a kind and gentle leader, just like God says for him to be - he does not rule me (for anyone with their mouths on the floor right about now).  so, after he thought about it - his response was the opposite of what i wanted to do.  but, i let him make the decision because it was truly a family decision and, honestly, he was right.  i prayed for myself to "get over it" so to speak.  as hard as it was (ok, so i did feel a little bit ruled when i didn't get my way), i swallowed that pill and just let it go.   in the end, everything turned out better than i could have ever imagined regarding that opportunity.   Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others (Phil. 2:3-4).

3.  nathaniel has been reading the kids bible stories + a devotion every night.  interestingly, the devotion he read always seemed to have something to do with an issue we had that day (fighting, not listening, being kind to animals, etc.)  last night, he didn't feel well so i was going to read them their devotion.  i looked for the index... there wasn't one!  i just KNEW nathaniel was picking out certian stories to read based on their meaning.  interesting that he was not... God was present and in control!  I can't say i have as good of an eye (or hand) for picking out devotionals, though.  or maybe there just wasn't a bible devotion about why you should not get in trouble playing in the bathroom.  lol.

0.  i want to be my husband's biggest fan. it will be a tough competetion (being the biggest) because kendal sure loves him a lot.  


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