Finding Christ in the Kitchen- Day 8 Made to Create


If you are just joining us in our series “Finding Christ in the Kitchen” feel free to hop on back to the introduction and go forward.  Collect the printable pages along the way if you like, to help with your journey!

When we look around us we can know without a doubt that God is a creative God!  Nature, people, animals!  He’s creative!   Since we are made in the image of God, we can know without a doubt that we too are made to create!

Open the eyes of my heart

 

“So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them” Genesis 1:27

Although God created many things out of nothing.. we of course must use something – He has given us the ability to bring about an amazing creation out of only a few ingredients – such as the potter with the clay, the artist with paints, the cook with foods!… 

Read More »

Sour Apple and Cherry Bark with Kool-Aid Juice Drink


I am a member of the #CollectiveBias® Social Fabric® Community.  This content has been compensated as part of a social shopper amplification for Collective Bias and its client.  All opinions expressed in this post are all my own.

I am so blessed and excited to create a new recipe for Kool-Aid because who in this whole wide world has not been a Kool-Aid fan almost their whole life?!  LOL

Sour Apple Candy Bark #KoolOff #shop

I have created recipes and crafts with Kool-Aid fruit juice drinks forever!  Reason…price, selection of flavors, taste and convenience!  Just when I thought Kool-Aid couldn’t get easier, they’ve come up with a convenient and modestly priced new juice drink that is pre-made and ready to roll!  No muss, no fuss..just open and serve.. Yay!  (think summer, picnics, beach, parties!) Perfect to #KoolOff with!  I bought mine at my local Walmart Smile

#KoolOff #shop #cbias

My kids can eat me out of house and home!!  Not just MY kids either..we constantly have a stream of teens coming in and out of our home.  I guess that is the blessing of living so close to their  schools! 

So I am continually trying to create new and fun treats and foods for them to snack on…so using Kool-Aid juice drink, I’ve come up with this fun candy bark and it is deeelish!  A total thumbs up from the kids..well and adults too if you LOVE sour and sweet all at the same time!

Sour Apple and Cherry Bark with Kool-Aid Juice Drink

Sour Apple Cherry Bark #KoolOff #shop

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 Kool-Aid Green Apple Packet
  • 1/2 Cup Kool-Aid Cherry ready to make with 35% less Sugar
  • 2 12oz packages Candy Melts (one green and one pink)
  • food coloring if you don’t use colored Candy Melts

#KoolOff #shop

 

Directions:

Melt one package of Candy Melts in a double boiler.  I just make one with two pans..an old one I have around for this kind of thing and then a non stick one for the top..fill bottom pan half way with water and then put other pan on top with Candy Melts.  Put onto the stove at low to medium heat..The candies will melt fairly fast.

#KoolOff #shop

Then pour 2 1/2 teaspoons of the Green Apple Kool-Aid.  You may want to do a taste test as to how sour you want this…oh but is soo mouth puckering good!! 

#KoolOff #shop

TIP:  Now..I didn’t know that Green Apple Kool-Aid didn’t have color so I used green food coloring.  If you use food coloring you need to put a little solid vegetable oil into the candy melts to keep it smooth as I found out.  You cannot add liquid to Candy Melts or it changes the consistency. 

So my best tip for this recipe..use colored Candy Melts.

Ok now..

Spread the first layer onto a cookie sheet..

#KoolOff #shop

While allowing to harden start the next layer by following the exact above directions, BUT..use the Cherry flavored Kool-Aid juice drink.  This does turn the Candy Melts a little pink but not much..so same advise…start with pink Candy Melts.

Then spread the pink candy melts on top of the hardened green.

#KoolOff #shop

 

You can decorate with topping to your hearts desire! 

Sour Apple and Cherry Bark #KoolOff #shop

This Sour Apple and Cherry Bark turned out absolutely deeelish!  My teens LOVED it and so did their friends..ummm requests for more!!  I also hid some for Easter brunch… Everyone loved it! 

Enjoy!

While you are out shopping for your ingredients to make this mouth puckering candy bark, look for pro fisherman Jim Dillard at the following Walmart stores:

  • Friday May 30th 5-7pm:  13675 Highway 43 Russellville, AL WM Supercenter
  • Saturday May 31st 3-5pm:  3100 Hough Rd Florence, AL WM Supercenter
  • Saturday May 31st 6-8pm:  517 Avalon Ave Muscle Shoals, AL WM Supercenter
  • Friday June 20th 5-7pm:  1210 Mineral Wells Ave Paris, TN WM Supercenter
  • Saturday June 21st 3-5pm:  1225 Paris Rd Murray, KY WM Supercenter
  • Saturday June 21st 6-8pm:  809 N 12th St Murray, KY WM Supercenter
  • Friday August 8th 5-7pm:  360 Harbison Blvd Columbia, SC WM Supercenter
  • Saturday August 9th 3-5pm:  1326 Bush River Rd Columbia, SC WM Supercenter
  • Saturday August 9th 6-8pm:  2401 Augusta Rd West Columbia, SC WM Supercenter

There will be product giveaways, t-shirts, games and more fun activities!

I’d love to know what  YOU made with Kool-Aid over the years?

Sour Apple and Cherry Bark with Kool-Aid Juice Drink
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Shari Lynne:
Recipe type: Dessert
: Candy
Ingredients
  • •1 Kool-Aid Green Apple Packet
  • •1/2 Cup Kool-Aid Cherry ready to make with 35% less Sugar
  • •2 12oz packages Candy Melts (one green and one pink)
  • •food coloring if you don’t use colored Candy Melts
Instructions
  1. Melt one package of Candy Melts in a double boiler. I just make one with two pans..an old one I have around for this kind of thing and then a non stick one for the top..fill bottom pan half way with water and then put other pan on top with Candy Melts. Put onto the stove at low to medium heat..The candies will melt fairly fast
  2. Then pour 2½ teaspoons of the Green Apple Kool-Aid. You may want to do a taste test as to how sour you want this
  3. Spread the first layer onto a cookie sheet
  4. While allowing to harden start the next layer by following the exact above directions, BUT..use the Cherry flavored Kool-Aid juice drink. This does turn the Candy Melts a little pink but not much..so same advise…start with pink Candy Melts
  5. Then spread the pink candy melts on top of the hardened green.
  6. You can decorate with topping to your hearts desire!
Notes
TIP: Now..I didn’t know that Green Apple Kool-Aid didn’t have color so I used green food coloring. If you use food coloring you need to put a little solid vegetable oil into the candy melts to keep it smooth as I found out. You cannot add liquid to Candy Melts or it changes the consistency.

So my best tip for this recipe..use colored Candy Melts

 

Linking up with: Tip Me Tuesday, Twirl and Take a Bow, Titus 2 Tuesday, Titus 2sday, Tasty Tuesday, One Project at a Time

 

Macaroni and Cheese Bake


I received a text the other day from my son… “Oh by the way Mom, I’m suppose to be bringing something for a Potluck Dinner tonight up here at the High School”  It was 4 pm and I was up to my eyeballs in kids and other projects with NO groceries in the house!  I have learned to ask God right away when I need ideas for something fast and quick!  Just when I’m about to panic and think..there is nothing in my cupboards, He always gives me ideas! 

This is why it’s so important to have just a few basics in your cupboard and fridge all the time.  It doesn’t have to be much..just a few things and boom..a meal fit for a King…well maybe not a King, but for teenagers it was perfect!

Psst..don’t mind the pics..this was on the fly!

Macaroni and Cheese Bake

Macaroni and Cheese Bake

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 Package Pasta ..your choice of size and shape!
  • 3 – 4 cups Cheese  any combination! (Cheddar, Mozzarella, Colby Jack, Swiss, Sharp Cheddar, American, Parmesan)
  • 1 – 1 1/2 tsp. Garlic Salt
  • 3/4 cube of Butter
  • 3/4 Cup Milk (whole or heavy is best but 2 % works just fine)
  • Optional – Any kind of add ins (bacon, veggies, hot dogs Winking smile )

Directions:

Boil and Drain Pasta

Macaroni and Cheese Bake

Add Butter and Milk and stir

Macaroni and Cheese Bake

 

 

Now add your Cheeses and Garlic Salt…I added Swiss, Cheddar and Mozzarella

Macaroni and Cheese Bake

Macaroni and Cheese Bake

Stir and pour into a greased 9X13 baking pan

Macaroni and Cheese Bake

Top with Parmesan Cheese if you like or like I did with American Cheese..I didn’t have enough to cover the whole Macaroni and Cheese Bake so I made a little design..

Cover and Bake in oven for about 20 min. on 350 degrees!

That’s it!  Dinner for the Potluck in about 40 min.  and oh teens just love this kind of stuff!

By the way you could definitely make this and freeze for later!

Enjoy friends!

Macaroni and Cheese Bake
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Quick and Easy
Shari Lynne:
Recipe type: Dinner
: Pasta
Serves: 6-8
Ingredients
  • •1 Package Pasta ..your choice of size and shape!
  • •3 – 4 cups Cheese any combination! (Cheddar, Mozzarella, Colby Jack, Swiss, Sharp Cheddar, American, Parmesan)
  • •1 – 1½ tsp. Garlic Salt
  • •3/4 cube of Butter
  • •3/4 Cup Milk (whole or heavy is best but 2 % works just fine)
  • •Optional – Any kind of add ins (bacon, veggies, hot dogs)
Instructions
  1. Boil and Drain Pasta
  2. Add Butter and Milk and stir
  3. Now add your Cheeses and Garlic Salt
  4. Stir and pour into a greased 9X13 baking pan
  5. Top with a little extra cheese
  6. Cover with foil and cook at 350 degrees for 20 mins

 

Finding Christ in the Kitchen–Day 7 Made to Create


If today is your first day joining Finding Christ in the Kitchen, you may want to hop on back to the introduction and move forward..or not! LOL There are printables along the way that will help you with your journey and hopefully some helpful tips that will bring your heart closer to Christ in the Kitchen!  If you choose not to go back it is totally ok..I created each day to stand on it’s own.

You’ve heard it before, there have even been books written regarding this subject.. YOU were MADE TO CREATE!  Really you are!

Made to Create - Finding Christ in the Kitchen

For many years I never saw anything creative in  me.  I didn’t have time to even think about being creative..or so I thought.  I mean who has time when you’re a Mom taking care of lots of babies and kids! 

When other women would talk about being creative I would feel so discouraged and inferior.  Some days I wondered how anyone could have time to even think about doing anything but getting through the day..let alone be creative! 

I suppose getting through the day has it’s own creative aspects! LOL

I had convinced myself that I had no creative talents…well, except being a Mom.

Over the course of many years, I began to become aware of how my family and friends would be in awe of something that seemed so easy to me.  It was my cooking and meal creations!  They marveled at how I could throw together a whole meal that was deelish and eye appealing out of seemingly nothing.

Sure it took work..but God seemed to give me these ideas and I would be able to just create it.

It was even prophesied over me at a huge ministry retreat about my meals!  Isn’t that crazy!

I began to see that my creativity lied in food and cooking.  I know I’m sloooow.  I really didn’t think cooking belonged in the “creative” category.  I mean EVERYONE has to cook right?!

Then God led me to this verse:

“Then the Lord said to Moses, “See, I have chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills— to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, to cut and set stones, to work in wood, and to engage in all kinds of crafts. Moreover, I have appointed Oholiab son of Ahisamak, of the tribe of Dan, to help him. Also I have given ability to all the skilled workers to make everything I have commanded you.”  Exodus 31:1-6

You see God is the giver of gifts and talents.  He is the one that fills us with skill, ability and knowledge “in all kinds of crafts”!

Cooking is a skill, a craft!

Maybe you ARE creative in other areas but you feel you are not creative in food and meal preparation…the problem..we all NEED to cook don’t we.  Yep we do.

What are your creative gifts? 

Are you stumped?  Ask others what they think you are creative at doing..it’s a good insight when we cannot see our own creativity!

Even your family can help with this..including kids!

Use the printable above if you like, with your family or friends at a get together, each of you do a sheet for one another.  It will surprise and bless you to see just how others see your gifts and talents as opposed to how you see yourself!  It will be of great encouragement to each of you!

Be blessed today friends!

Finding Christ in the Kitchen-Provision Day 6


If you are just joining us on this journey to Finding Christ in the Kitchen you may want to start from the introduction and work your way forward.  Not because I’m so wonderful, but because there are some fun free printables along the way and suggestions on how you might use them.. But it is certainly not necessary.  I created each little study to stand on it’s own so that you could jump in anywhere and feel great about it! 

We are on the second day of Provision

I find it truly amazing that in a land that was under such a severe drought, God still provided for Elijah the woman and her son in such a miraculous way.   That’s what He does isn’t it!?  He’s miraculous, amazing and surprising all at the same time!

For those joining I am referring to  1 Kings 17:7-16 (you can read it in Day 5)

Before Elijah had come along, what was the heart condition of this woman?

  • She had given up
  • She had no faith

(I don’t know that I can blame her)

Remember she told Elijah she didn’t have any bread, but…

“a handful of flour in a jar and a little oil”

Go and check out what is in your fridge and cupboards..how much food is really in there.  It may be little but you can make many things with just a “little”  …. and somehow God seems to multiply the work or our hands to make it … “just enough”

So write down 3-5 really basic ingredients you have in your cupboard and fridge right now…. What do I mean by basic? 

  • Simple things like: Cream of Chicken Soup, Beans, Rice, flour, oil…you know.. the basics..
  • You can use the printable below to help “open” up your eyes to just what is really in there…

Now Elijah made a bold request of this widow..

First he said “don’t be afraid”

Now write down 1 thing you fear most when it comes to food preparation or provision:

  • Are you afraid you don’t have enough?
  • Are afraid that what you have will amount to a big fat zero?
  • Just between you and God..what are you afraid of?

By the way..Just a little side note..

Fear can be disguised as Anger and Frustration..go deeper..

Then Elijah said.. “first make a small loaf of bread for me from what you have and bring it to me, and then make something for yourself and your son”

What!?  Umm we’re dying here, can’t you see that?

Are you afraid to feed extras at your house-for fear that there will not be enough?  (pssst…I used to be..)

Check out what God says for Elijah to tell this woman:

“For this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the Lord sends rain on the land.’” 1 Kings 17:14

WOW!! Are you encouraged when you read that? 

God promises to see her through this drought!

This verse is for us TODAY!

Let’s have Faith, Trust God and be Generous..

I know it’s not easy – our walk of faith rarely is..

  • Now write down 2-3 meals that require a minimum of ingredients..try to include the above ingredients.
  • Invite one little ol friend over to enjoy one of these meals with you.  By the way..this can include just allowing one of your kids to have a friend over too!

Now to help you invite a friend or family here is a simple invitation.

Dinner Invitation

Simply fold over and put your details on the inside!  A child could use this or an adult..well boys may not want to..but they wouldn’t want to use an actual invitation anyway Open-mouthed smile

Another printable I would like to include for you is a simple check list for looking into your cupboard and fridge and finding just a couple of simple basics to put together a nice meal.  Now of course you don’t need to list everything out that is in your stock..just some basic items that you might use to get you thinking in the right direction.  Sometimes if we have it written down in front of us, we can see better of what we really do have

If you need help thinking of some super simple meals..check the blog..even under freezer meals..there are lots.. I don’t have all my recipes listed as I am still a bit under construction…sorry.

Cooking from the Cupboard

I do have one last idea for those that are crafty, visual and talented….

I will be putting it in the Faith Filled Food for Moms Newsletter..it will be excluuusive to my subscribers.  Feel free to sign up below, but pleeease do not feel at all pressured!  I love ALL of my readers whether you sign up for a silly ol Newsletter or not! For REAL!

Until then…

May the Lord Bless you! 

Trust in His provision for you and be generous.

 

Linking up with: Family Fun Friday, Heart Filled Friday, Faith Filled Friday, Essential Friday

Easter Nest with Chocolate Eggs


The following is a guest post from Mary-Kate at Christianity Cove!  She has shared an awesome teaching and craft today for all of my awesome readers! Thank You!  Christianity Cove has tons of fun and educational Christian teachings for kids and Moms alike.  She has a wonderful eBook out called, The Ultimate Mom Challenge, which I am currently reading and will be reviewing soon! 

Easter Nest with Chocolate Eggs

This snack of a small Easter Nest basket and three eggs allows you to discuss with children how the eggs tie in with the Christian tradition as a symbol of new life.

easter nest with chocolate eggs

 

Materials:

• 3 c. mini marshmallows
• 3 TBSP unsalted butter
• 1/2 tsp. vanilla
• 4 c. dry Chow Mein noodles

• Chocolate or candy Easter eggs

Instructions:

1. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
2. Over low heat, melt marshmallows and butter in a large saucepan. Once melted, stir in the vanilla, then the Chow Mein noodles.
3. Coat your hands liberally with shortening, and have some nearby for re-coating.

4. Form a clump of noodle – smaller than a tennis ball and larger than a golf ball – into a ball while pressed your thumbs into the middle, forming a nest.

5. Allow the nests to cool, then fill with candy eggs.

 

Discussion:

Who knows why Easter eggs have become part of the Easter tradition?

 

(If any of the children know the answer, praise them for knowing, then go on to

explain in detail.)

 

For hundreds of years, eggs have been a symbol for new life. After the coming of Christ and his resurrection, it became a symbol of eternal life. Eggs contain future life and often hatch real life into existence. The egg has also become a symbol of rebirth as we find when we turn to Jesus with our lives. Can anyone tell me what the word resurrection means?

 

(If a child answers correctly praise them, but for the sake of the other children,

continue to explain.)

In the Easter story, Christ died upon the cross, but on the third day he rose from the dead, and he also gave us the promise of eternal life. As the Bible says in John 11:25-26: “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who lives in me and believes in me will live, even after dying. Everyone who lives in me and believes in me will never ever die.”

 

Hold up the bird’s nest for all to see, and point to the three eggs in the nest.

Through the years the Easter egg has come to represent the promise of new life, and being born again for all who believe.

 

 

Mary Kate Warner

Mary-Kate is a regular blogger at Christianity Cove ( http://www.christianitycove.com/).  You can often find her writing about Christian Parenting, Homeschool Teaching, Bible Study and Sunday School Activities, Faith and inspiring children to love God.  Follow her at @SundaySchoolGalFacebookGoogle+ & Pinterest

 

Linking up with : From Dream to Reality, Pretty Wednesday, WFMW, Welcome Home Wednesday, Little R&R, Walking Redeemed, Wholehearted Wednesday, Whimsy Wed., All Things Thursday, Hearts for Home, Thrive at Home, Bloom Designs, Inspire Us Thurs., Thrifty Thursday, Family Fun Friday, Heart Filled Friday, Essential Fridays, Made by You Monday, Modest Monday, Monday Musings, Mummy Mondays, Anything Goes, Manic Monday, Montessori Monday, Sunday Soiree, Living Proverbs 31, Make it Pretty Monday, Tip me Tuesday

Making High School Graduation Announcements Special


I am so excited to be partnering with Find Your Influence and their client tinyprints.  I have been compensated for this campaign, but as always, all opinions are my own.

As I begin to plan ahead to this coming June, the thing that is of utmost importance on my mind right now is making high school graduation announcements special for my son…

#TinyPrintsGrad

I still can’t believe it.   I remember when I was pregnant with my son 17 1/2 years ago and thinking…he will be grown before I know it.   Knowing this to be true,  since I had already raised four other children..

As I remember back at that pregnancy….I cherished every thought about becoming a new Mommy again.

Life has it’s challenges though doesn’t it.  His birth and first 11 years of his life were difficult to say the least, and as his other 2 little sisters came along..I began to think “will this ever end!” 

Somehow all the daydreams of being the perfect mother with the perfect children faded away..once again.  LOL

Why did  I think that I would be the perfect Mother “this time”  Why did I think I would have perfect children “this time”. 

If there is one thing I’ve learned over the past 36 years of parenting…

Time is not meant to be frittered away..because the day will surely come when our babies will be grown and ready to move to that wonderful and exciting stage of life..that doesn’t include you so much anymore. 

God is amazing how he works all things for good..Noah is very low key these days…the quirky little things I thought would surely hinder his life have become the most beautiful things about him..

While planning for graduation I was given this awesome opportunity to order special Graduation Announcements from tinyprints!  Talk about PERFECT TIMING!  YAY!  They turned out beeautifully, as you can see above.  My son kind of shrugged at the idea of picking out Graduation Announcements until he saw all of the cool ones he had to choose from on the tinyprints website.

These are just a few…

tinyprints 1

tinyprints 2

Aren’t those so cool!  And the girls..oh my the girls designs are out of this world.  Talk about designer!! 

tinyprints3

The best part about these Graduation Announcements is that they are truly reasonably priced AND you get to design them yourself.  It was fun!  We chose the new hand-stamped foil design in gold but it also comes in silver.

Oh and they come WITH the envelopes which is a total plus as this can really add up on cost if you have to buy separately.  There are other Graduation items that you can buy also, like personalized graduation advise cards that you can have at your party for your guests to write their thoughts to your graduate and personalized thank you cards.

As if that were not enough..tinyprints has other gifts for the graduate like this cute coffee mug that you can personalize!  I personalized with some of the highlights from Noah’s Senior Year..but you could of course personalize anyway you would like.

DSC_5171

Yes it’s time to start thinking of my little boy as a grown man and put all of my childish ideas of keeping him at home with me forever away.  LOL  I am so very proud of the Godly young man that he has become. 

Thank you tinyprints for allowing me to make my sons graduation special with these special graduation announcements and Coffee Mug.

Now on to plan the party…. shhhh it’s a surprise!

 

What would be the one piece of advice you would give to a graduating Senior?

How to Choose The Best Dog Breed For Your Family

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of American Kennel Club. All opinions are 100% mine.

How to choose the best Dog Breed for your family lifestyle is a huge responsibility.  You need to consider size, temperament, are they good with children, are they aggressive in nature and so much more.  There is A LOT to consider and I am so thankful for clubs such as the American Kennel Club and the huge amount of resources that they offer. 

Boxer Puppies photo 77524d07-6f83-4ac6-9d99-445ddee7bc76_zps3439838d.jpg

I have owned a total of 3 dogs in my life…one when I was a teen growing up, she was an “All American”, in other words a “Mutt”.   She was a friendly and beautiful dog with a wonderful loving personality.  With long flowing golden hair and long snout, she looked as though she belonged to the Collie or Retriever family.  

Then there was our Black Lab.  Shortly after my husband and I were married and blended our family together (over 27 years ago) he and the kids decided that we “needed” a dog to make our family complete.  Of course the family down the street had a litter of Black Lab pups..they were FREE!  Sooo I gave in and we had a new baby in the house!  Oh you know what I’m talking about! LOL  We had our loyal and active Lab for years,  even after our big kids were grown and moved out of the house.

Then there was Sunnyboy…

Sunnyboy1

When we had more kids and while they were still fairly young, once again the fam decided that we “needed” to have a new member of the family… a dog.  Well, my hubs and I were getting older and I was not at all interested in having a dog long after the kids moved out, that we had to walk everyday and was hard to bathe because of size.  We had done that one before..so I finally gave in..

BUT UNDER ONE STIPULATION…

I get to pick the type of dog out…

I wanted small but my kids and husband wanted BIG.  Nope, I get to pick out the type of dog…I was adamant about this because I knew who would eventually be the caretaker of this dog.  So I began my search and let me tell you..when you become  serious about dog ownership you need help!  I just didn’t want any old dog..I didn’t want a yapper, I didn’t want a loud dog,  I didn’t want a mean tempered dog, I didn’t want a skittery jittery type dog.   I was going to be quite picky this time! 

Oh and I didn’t want a dog where we had to fit HIS/HER lifestyle..I wanted the Dog to fit OUR lifestyle.

I had never paid for a purebred dog before..it had seemed like a waste of money, until now.  After my husband and I discussed the importance of our family in relationship to a dog, we put away a sum of money and began to hunt.  I had a friend that was a dog trainer and she suggested several breeds that would fit into our family well.  We searched for breeders in our area and we read tons of stuff about the breeds we were interested in. 

We learned a lot from the American Kennel Club and even considered the AKC Rescue Network for our perfect “family member”.   They have wonderful purebred dogs and are made up of long time dog experts that help match the dogs with families that are a great fit.

After being very thorough we found our new little baby doll… Sunnyboy.  He was a King Charles Cavalier Spaniel and oooohhhh he was soooo cute and oooh he was soooo sweet!  We bought him from a licensed Breeder.   We were a little nervous having never done this before.  There were lots of questions to ask and we for sure wanted to make sure we were buying from licensed breeders

Some of the things we did:

  • Make sure to have a good relationship with the Breeder..meaning did they answer our questions thoroughly.
  • Was the premises clean and odor free?
  • What was the Breeder/Puppy relationship like.  Did they like each other?  Were they happy around each other..and so on. 
  • Make sure to get proper paperwork

There are lots of things you can do to ensure that you are buying from a great breeder.  You can see more tips from the AKC website.  Thanks to all of their awesome resources we felt confident that we were getting a healthy and happy puppy. 

I learned a lot from being so picky and truly it paid off.  Sunnyboy was THEE perfect dog for our family.  Happy, content, low maintenance (except his hair), friendly, totally easy going and loving..Yep he was just right…

We had our little Sunnyboy for 7 years..up until a dog from our neighbor jumped our fence and attacked him..that was a few months ago..right around Christmas.  We had to put him to sleep.  It was a sad time for both families…

I can’t stress enough how important choosing a dog breed for your family is.  Our neighbors were heart broken that their dog had done this and yet it was an aggressive breed of dog that they owned.  You just never know what can happen.

My personal TOP TIPS for How to Choose the best Dog Breed for Your Family:

  • Size – Size matters!  Although small dogs seem good for families with children, you have to be very careful that the children are not rough with little dogs.  Small dogs have little bones that can be broken very easily.  Big dogs..well they are BIG!  You need to decide if you have the type of home that can facilitate a large dog and his needs.
  • Breed – It’s really important that you research different breeds and what their personalities are like…obvious by the situation we had above.
  • Will they be good with children – Let’s face it, some breeds of dogs simply are not meant for children.  By researching the breeds you will learn what these are.
  • Long hair vs. Short hair – This seems like it’s not a big deal, BUT you need to consider allergies, budget for haircuts and be diligent in brushing dogs with long hair or it gets matted.
  • Health issues in breeds – No breed of dog is perfect, it’s good to also research what types of health issues are common to which breeds, so that you may be more aware should they arise.  Also so that you can financially plan accordingly.
  • Use a Licensed Breeder – There are many types of breeders… some good and some very bad.  I think it goes without saying..research WHO you are dealing with!  The AKC is an excellent resource for this.
  • Life Span – Some breeds have longer life expectancies and some have shorter.  My daughter recently had to put her 8 year old Great Dane to sleep.  It was very sad, They take excellent care of their dogs and spent A LOT of money on some health issues that are common for this size of dog.  But sadly these big, loving, beautiful dogs simply do not have a long life expectancy.  Something to consider.
  • Finances – Just plan for it.  This is a member of your family and food, Veterinarian visits cost $$.
  • Family Time – Some dogs take more time and energy than others.  Our little Sunnyboy took very little effort to make him happy.  We could take him on walks anywhere or we could be couch potatoes and no matter what…he was happy.
  • Research! - Use the AKC for this..it is an excellent resource!

There are now so many cute breeds to choose from..way more than there were back in the “olden” days! LOL 

Check out these totally cute Mini Wirehaired Dachshund Puppies…

Good luck in your hunt for a new family member and also Happy Birthday to the American Kennel Club..they are celebrating their 130th Anniversary this year!

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Finding Christ in the Kitchen–Provision Day 5


If you are new to “Finding Christ in the Kitchen” series, you may want to start at the beginning and move forward.  Don’t forget to grab up your printables along the way.  Or you can just join starting right today..I designed it that way!

Finding Christ in the Kitchen

Now is the time to seek God.  To ask for His will and His heart about your cooking, food prep and provision.  Be honest with God – are you frustrated or a little depressed about it? 

I realize that we just talked about Contentment the past 2 days BUT being content is a heart habit that takes time to establish.  So if you are feeling down then simply tell God and ask Him to give you HIS heart concerning this matter.

So what do you think Gods’ heart looks like concerning the matter Provision? 

“So Abraham called that place The Lord Will Provide. And to this day it is said, “On the mountain of the Lord it will be provided.”  Genesis 22:14

“The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.” Psalms 23:1

“And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.”  Philippians 4:19

God promises to provide for us doesn’t he?  Sometimes it’s hard to walk in confidence in this matter when the cupboards seem bare and we have so little $$.

Check out God’s amazing provision for Elijah, the woman and the son….

“Some time later the brook dried up because there had been no rain in the land.  Then the word of the Lord came to him (Elijah):   “Go at once to Zarephath in the region of Sidon and stay there. I have directed a widow there to supply you with food.”   So he went to Zarephath.  When he came to the town gate, a widow was there gathering sticks.  He called to her and asked, “Would you bring me a little water in a jar so I may have a drink?”   As she was going to get it, he called, “And bring me, please, a piece of bread.”

 “As surely as the Lord your God lives,” she replied, “I don’t have any bread—only a handful of flour in a jar and a little olive oil in a jug. I am gathering a few sticks to take home and make a meal for myself and my son, that we may eat it—and die.”

 Elijah said to her, “Don’t be afraid. Go home and do as you have said. But first make a small loaf of bread for me from what you have and bring it to me, and then make something for yourself and your son.   For this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the Lord sends rain on the land.’”

She went away and did as Elijah had told her. So there was food every day for Elijah and for the woman and her family.  For the jar of flour was not used up and the jug of oil did not run dry, in keeping with the word of the Lord spoken by Elijah.” 

I Kings 17: 7-16

Ok does that ROCK YOUR SOCKS OFF or what?!

Umm God is STILL in the miracle business!  He still provides our daily needs!

Are you in a financial drought right now?  Well guess what..that’s great, because God loves nothing more than to show you His great love by providing just exactly what you “need” at just the right time you “need” it.

Hop up now and go to your cupboards…do you have flour, water and oil?  Here’s a little recipe for how to make bread.

Just for today…

Meditate on this story and Gods powerful, amazing provision.  Journal your heart out to THE PROVIDER!  Confess your lack of trust if need be and let’s move on….

Tomorrow…more of what God shows us in this mighty story.

Be blessed Today my Friends!

Get Inspired: Easy Recipes, Crafts and Projects Linky Party


Welcome to week #21 of our Get Inspired:  Easy Recipes, Crafts and Projects linky party! We’re so glad you can join us! Please feel free to link up your new creations all week long for us to share and find new ideas from across the web-world.

Every Wednesday (technically Tuesday night at 9pm EST) we open up the linky for bloggers across the web to link up their posts. You can add new projects and recipes all week long! If you’re not a blogger, you can check out all the great recipes, crafts, DIY projects, tips and tricks that others have shared.

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You’re sure to find inspiration for your next big project. Our party is hosted by six fabulous ladies, which means once you link up here you’re link will be shared on six websites. Be sure to check back each week because we will feature our favorite links and share them on Facebook and Pinterest. {It’s not a requirement, but would be great if you’d come follow along on our Facebook and Pinterest… Here are our links below}

Christina @ It’s a Keeper {Facebook | Pinterest}

Megan @ NEPA Mom {Facebook | Pinterest}

Shari @ Faith Filled Food for Moms {Facebook | Pinterest}

Lauren @ From Gate to Plate {Facebook | Pinterest}

Jenna @ Bucktown Bargains {Facebook | Pinterest}

Kara @ Saving by Design {Facebook | Pinterest}

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Here are a few of our favorite things, we hope you enjoy them as much as we did!

One Pan Cheesy Smoked Sausage from Singing Honey Bee

 A Little Dutch Oven Love …In Sourdough Form from Adventures in All Things Food

Easy Chocolate and Peanut Butter Shooters by Musing of a Housewife

Mini Terrarium from A Life in the Balance

Easy Easter Centerpieces from Nest Full of New

If you’re linking up, here are a few things to remember:

**You may link up as many times as you would like. The more the merrier!

**Please link up only your personal work. Share your recipes, crafts, DIY projects, and other tips and tricks.

**Please link to a specific post on your blog, not your homepage. Please no Esty shops or items you are selling.

**We encourage you to pin the items we’ve featured, but please click through and pin from the original source.

**By linking up to GI, you are giving the 6 blogs listed above the right to feature one of your photos on all of our social media networks and blogs.

**Be sure to check out the other recipes, projects and tips that are linked up and give them some comment love. That’s what’s so wonderful about GI! Now, let’s see what you have for us this week!

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Sour Apple and Cherry Bark with Kool-Aid Juice Drink

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Macaroni and Cheese Bake

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Finding Christ in the Kitchen–Day 7 Made to Create

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Finding Christ in the Kitchen-Provision Day 6

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Easter Nest with Chocolate Eggs

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Making High School Graduation Announcements Special

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How to Choose The Best Dog Breed For Your Family

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Finding Christ in the Kitchen–Provision Day 5

Get Inspired: Easy Recipes, Crafts and Projects Linky Party

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Finding Christ in the Kitchen–Contentment Day 4

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Finding Christ in the Kitchen–Contentment Day 3

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Ernest & Celestine a New Family Movie Plus Giveaway!

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Finding Christ in the Kitchen – Day 2 Faith

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Why Have I Gone to Partial Feed?

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Get Inspired: Easy Recipes, Crafts and Projects Linky Party