Wednesday, March 30, 2011

WDW - Banana Split Oatmeal


Try this fun way to eat your morning oatmeal!

Cook oats as usual. I prefer the microwave method of 1/2 cup old fashioned oats with 1 cup water, in a large pyrex bowl, cooked on 50% power for 6-7 minutes. Stir halfway through cooking.

When done, transfer oats to serving bowl. Quickly sprinkle on chocolate chips to your liking. With a spoon, don't stir, but gently cover up the chocolate chips with the oatmeal- just so they can melt and there are wonderful little pockets of oozy chocolate. Top the oatmeal with chopped strawberries and bananas. Enjoy!

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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A Busy Season

Hello everyone out there in blogosphere...I'm the e-wife...remember me? Long time no write...

My poor blog has been sadly neglected. I haven't had the time or energy to post. Whenever Wednesdays roll around, I have fleeting thoughts of WDW, but I haven't even tried a new recipe in who knows when. Dinner these days is usually decided at about 3:00 in the afternoon instead of being planned ahead.

It's just a really busy season.

We leave in just about 3 weeks for our trip... it's hard to believe that it's nearly upon us after almost a year of planning. We have officially entered what Rich and I call the "panic phase." Re-checking everything and making sure we didn't forget anything... frantically re-scanning the travel books and gathering info from friends, gathering reading material for flights, organizing the zillions of documents we have (plane tickets, hotel reservations, etc), getting foreign money, squaring away foreign cell phone use, buying last minute clothing items (like coats! whoops we might need those.) and all those last minute details. I seriously find myself feeling nervous and shaky several times throughout the day whenever I think about the trip. I guess I ultimately worry that things won't go as I have planned. I need to remember that it's not my plans that matter - but God's. He has graciously allowed us to plan this trip and is completely in control of every detail. Any changes or mishaps will be in His perfect plan. But, I still echo the sentiment of one of the toys in Toy Story when he declared, "It's the PERFECT time to panic!!"

I realized that I haven't even blogged about Drew once while he's been gone! Hopefully some of you have been following his blog. I have loved seeing all his posts and living vicariously through him on his travels. God has blessed him in many ways thus far, he really is doing great and enjoying everything. It's good to see him on Skype a couple times a week (we don't skype more often because of the 10 hour time difference). It sure does a mother's heart good to look at her son and see that he's doing well. I can't imagine life without skype! He sprained his ankle last week, so we are praying that heals quickly. He has an archeology dig this week, and a 5 day trip to Galilee the following week, so hopefully the ankle won't be a hindrance. They do some amazing things at IBEX - what an experience! I am so thankful Drew could take advantage of it. I can't wait to give him a big hug when we meet in Paris!

On top of getting ready for the trip, life has just been super busy! Recently, we enjoyed the semi formal Master's Seminary 25th anniversary banquet at Reagan Library, under the majestic Air Force One. Our special friends, Myra and Brian Shealy, came into town for it and spent a night with us which was just wonderful. We also got to "double date" for the event with David and Christy Caldwell, a couple we met in Rich's parenting class that we are enjoying getting to know. We also just finished hosting and serving at the Shepherds' Conference, which was such a privilege! I was especially blessed that one of our guests brought his wife, Deena, a dear friend of mine. I had a wonderful time of fellowship with her and loved gleaning from her wisdom. Our visitors have been such a blessing, as we've enjoyed rich fellowship and lots of laughter and good times.
Below are some pics from the Seminary banquet.


The amazing venue! Our table was on the other side of the plane. There was aslo a ground level below with lots more tables. There were 1000 people at the event! The food was amazing!

Here's a photo of me and my studly date.


I was totally delighted to see my sweet friend Deidre's nametag sitting on the table next to mine! We had a wonderful time of fellowship with her and Jesse!

A big chunk of my time and energy lately has been devoted to the Master's Kids. The stack of applications are in for next year, and I just finished processing them and determining next year's leadership crew. Plus, I'm still in the midst of planning the rest of the current year including our huge graduation ceremony in May! I keep reminding myself that I am still in the learning process - I'm sure next year will be easier and less effort. But, I am truly enjoying this ministry that God has given me - spending time at TMK with the ladies (which I do a couple times a month) has been such a highlight and makes all the behind the scenes detail work worth it all. They are a precious group of women, and I thank God He has allowed me to be in their lives. I try to not only help provide a wonderful time for them to spend with their children, but to minister to and encourage them as wives and mothers.

My niece is also getting married in May, and I am helping with her bridal shower and wedding favors (I'm making soap daily!). And, not to mention, Emma is graduating high school! She will have a graduation in June with our homeschool group, Lighthouse, so there are details that need attending to for that. Thankfully we found a graduation dress last week (now to find one for a prom she's going to...). The last month or so has been filled with senior pictures (with 3 different photographers), SAT's, FAFSA's and TMC paperwork, visits to nursing schools, etc. She will be attending Master's next year, but is unsure of her course of study. She has desired to be a nurse for some time, but nursing school admission is difficult as all local schools are impacted. She's considering alternate plans and we are still praying for direction from the Lord in that. Meanwhile, she's finishing up her home school, enjoying her volunteer work at City of Hope, and keeping busy babysitting and with her photography. She's been doing a lot of weddings, and even gets to go to Hawaii in August to shoot one with Tracy Dodson! What a rough job, huh?

So, I guess for anyone interested, that about catches you up with what's been going on and my excuse for not blogging. I am not sure if I'll have time to blog from our trip. I am NOT bringing my laptop, but others will, so maybe I'll have a chance to post a photo or two during our travels. :-)

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Reverse Thinking Video

Emma showed me this video yesterday and I thought it was awesome. Take a minute to watch.

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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

It's soap time again!

I really enjoyed my soapmaking endeavors last fall, and couldn't wait to make some more. After selling off a bunch of the soap I made, as well as giving a lot away as Christmas gifts, I was down to merely 10 bars of soap for our family! And out of those 10, six went to Israel with Drew (he requested to take mom's soap along - love that boy.) Anyways, I put some thought into what I'd like to try next and got my supplies replenished, and made 8 batches. That is the really fun part of it for me - thinking of something new to do. It was interesting experimenting with new essential oils and different spices for color. There are four types of goat milk soap and four types of all vegetable oil soap. The first two are made especially for hands, and the rest are great all-body soaps.

One thing I realized is, that you are fairly limited color-wise and scent-wise when you choose to be an all-natural soaper. But that's ok, as I think it's totally worth it and I absolutely love using all natural ingredients. My skin is so much less dry than it used to be. In fact, I used to say I had dry skin and I don't think I can even say that anymore. Amazing what happens when you stop rubbing detergent all over yourself!

Soaps are still 4 for $10. If you are interested, please email me at or click on the mail icon at the end of this post.

I can ship 4 bars for $4.95, and can quote you shipping for more bars if you like. If you live locally, I can just give them to you in person.

Remember, not all bars are exactly the same size, shape or weight - each one is hand cut. As they sell, I will try to update the blog with the quantities of each still available.

Here are the offerings this time around.... photos courtesy of (thanks, Ems!)


Coffee & Clove Kitchen Hand Soap
(Goat's Milk)

This soap contains brewed Kenyan coffee and coffee grounds, and the spicy aroma of clove bud essential oil. Use on hands for dissolving the smell of garlic and onion. Not a great all body soap unless you like a good exfoliation.

Ingredients: Saponified olive oil, saponified organic palm oil, saponified coconut oil, goat's milk, brewed Kenyan coffee, Kenyan coffee grounds, clove bud essential oil.
Available: 10


Lavender, Lemongrass & Apricot Kernel Gardener's Soap
(All Vegetable Oil)

Apricot Kernel helps make this soap very exfoliating. Not a good shower soap, but great for scrubbing hands clean anytime, and especially after gardening. I love this smell of this soap - so clean and refreshing! The combination of lavender and lemongrass is divine.

Ingredients: Saponified olive oil, saponified organic palm oil, saponified coconut oil, ground apricot kernel, lemongrass essential oil, lavender essential oil, turmeric, dried lavender flowers.
Available: SOLD OUT


Green Clay, Grapefruit & Sage Soap
(Goat's Milk)

Normally, the colorant wouldn't be in the title of the soap, but French Green Clay is not merely used as a colorant in this soap, but the minerals in the clay actually benefit skin by absorbing impurities. Also added were crushed sage leaves and the fresh citrusy scent of pink grapefruit essential oil. A great all body and especially nice complexion soap.

Ingredients: Saponified olive oil, saponified organic palm oil, saponified coconut oil, goat's milk, French green clay, grapefruit essential oil, crushed sage leaves.
Available: SOLD OUT


Lightly Lavender Sweet Baby Soap
(Goat's Milk)

Same as the "Sweet Baby" soap I made in the fall, but this time with an eensy amount of lavender essential oil, and just a little swirl of lavender color on top. Still gentle and mild,a great soap for babies' skin or for those who like a plain, super moisturizing soap.

Ingredients: Saponified olive oil, saponified organic palm oil, saponified coconut oil, goat's milk, lavender essential oil, alkanet powder.
Available: SOLD OUT

Orange & Mint Soap
(All Vegetable Oil)

This refreshing soap is both minty and citrusy all at the same time. It is predominantly mint with a burst of orange on top, and the scents come together when you lather. A great all body soap.

Ingredients: Saponified olive oil, saponified organic palm oil, saponified coconut oil, peppermint essential oil, sweet orange essential oil, peppermint leaves, turmeric.
Available: SOLD OUT

Ginger, Lime & Calendula Soap
(All Vegetable Oil)

This is not the "spicy" ginger you think of when you eat a gingersnap. This essential oil is from the ginger bark, and is much more earthy in scent. Key lime essential oil is mixed in for a burst of citrus. Naturally coloring the soap are dried calendula petals. Calendula is not only beautiful, but has antibacterial and antiseptic properties. A great all body and especially nice complexion soap.

Ingredients: Saponified Olive oil, saponified organic palm oil, saponified coconut oil, calendula flower petals, ginger essential oil, key lime essential oil.
Available: 8

Lemon Poppyseed Soap
(All Vegetable Oil)

I love lemon poppyseed muffins, so I knew I'd love this soap. I have really fallen in love with lemon essential oil. Poppyseeds add a nice texture and light exfoliation. For some reason, this soap turned light pink in areas after a few weeks on the curing block. I was a little disappointed but it is still a lovely soap and smells super lemon fresh. A great all body soap.

Ingredients: Saponified olive oil, saponified organic palm oil, saponified coconut oil, lemon essential oil, poppy seeds.
Available: SOLD OUT

Oatmeal, Orange & Clove Soap
(Goat's Milk)

This one could be my favorite. It looks good enough to eat! The aroma of orange and cloves together is spicy-sweet and really yummy! Organic oats and ground cloves add texture for light exfoliaton, while turmeric adds orange flecks of color. A great all body soap.

Ingredients: Saponified olive oil, saponified organic palm oil, saponified coconut oil, goat's milk, organic oats, clove bud essential oil, sweet orange essential oil, ground cloves, turmeric.
Available: SOLD OUT

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