Wednesday, February 23, 2011

culinary adventures of the week

i have been craving cereal like its my job recently.  i finally found a recipe for granola that includes soaking (which makes it healthier and more digestible) so i can indulge my craving (why do i try to limit my whole grain intake?).

i definitely recommend it... especially since i already ate about half of one of the cookie sheets of it before it even cooled down :)  if you are interested, i used this recipe (tweaked a bit) from one of my favorite blogs, passionate homemaking.

and later this week i plan to make homemade vanilla extract.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

3 things that have affected me this week... shifting my focus off of myself and on to christ

1.)  hope for your dark night of the soul - being a melancholy, i am all too familiar with dark nights.  but i dont want it to be this way.  i was affected by bob kauflin's story of a 3 year long struggle with deep hopelessness:

About a year into the process I talked to a good friend, Gary Ricucci... I said, “Gary, I feel hopeless all the time.”
He said, “You know, Bob? I think your problem is that you don’t feel hopeless enough.”
I don’t know what I looked like on the outside, but on the inside I was saying, “You are crazy. You are crazy. I feel hopeless.”
He said, “No, if you were hopeless, you would stop trusting in yourself and rely completely on what Jesus Christ accomplished for you.”
That was the beginning of the way out. And I remember saying to myself literally hundreds of times—every time these feelings of hopelessness and panic and a desire to ball up in a fetal position would come on me—“I feel completely hopeless because I am hopeless, but Jesus Christ died for hopeless people, and I’m one of them.”
Over time I began to believe that. And today when I tell people that Jesus is a great Savior, I believe it, because I know that he saved me. That’s where my joy comes from. My joy comes from knowing that at the very bottom, at the very pit of who I am, it is blackness and sin, but the love and grace of Jesus goes deeper.

2.) Romans 8:1 sermon by my favorite man in the world - our church has studied romans 7 for the past few weeks, and debated over whether the "i" who anguishes over sin and slavery to the law in v. 13-25 refers to paul or is a literary device for non-believers.  alex and i lean towards the later (much less popular) belief.

one of the reasons alex believes this, as he pointed out in his sermon, is that there is no other precedent in the NT where someone so heavily focus on their sin with so little hope.  his exhortation to us was to passionately pursue christ and look to Him and not at our sin, and the sin will just seem to fall off.

you can listen to it here

3.) Francis Chan's Desiring God Pastors conference talk - wow this man is intimate with God.  and it doesn't come from thinking about himself.  it come from a passionate prayer for ONE THING: "to dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life and gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and inquire in his temple" (ps. 27:4)

Lord, let this be the one thing that i seek.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

february at our home, our pet chicken and tuna melts

february at our home has been a month of transition in many ways.  the biggest transition is that the kids are being moved to a new home (long story, maybe the topic of a future post).  originally it was supposed to happen this week, but its going to be delayed a bit (due to a current shortage of foster homes).  another transition is that my mom (finally!) moved in with us.  she has been a HUGE help with the kids.  also, I am going to be starting up work again (tomorrow is my first day!).  so, lots going on and lots changing.  sometimes change is interesting and fun, but sometimes i just wish that life would be a bit more smooth...

in other news (which is very exciting for me but may not interest you as much... its ok, i am not offended :) )... we may be getting a chicken!!! ever since i have been getting into local real foods, i have been really wanting to get chickens (and a goat... but chickens are the first step :) ).  Eggs from the store come from factory farms where the chickens get little exercise and horrible nutrition (sadly this is even true of most organic eggs), but when they are in your backyard, you can make sure chickens are getting lots of grass, bugs and cage-free time, which makes their eggs' nutrition go way up (and their cholesterol content way down).  plus they are super fresh and less likely to have bacteria like salmonella! 

a couple days ago, i was talking about my desire for chickens with a friend from our natural food co-op.  They currently have chickens but need to get rid of them and they have one left!  Now, I always figured we would own more than one (don't chickens get lonely?) but after finally checking into our local laws on this, I found out that we are legally only allowed to own one chicken in long beach (unless we had a much bigger yard).  so one would be perfect!  We would still need to but eggs, but this will supplement our nutrition well.  there is a chance we may be moving soon, but if not we may be the proud owners of a chicken!!!! :D

in other news, i have posted a real food friday recipe over at somaticos:  this week, tuna melts!  mmmm... i am biased, but they are delish.