Friday, July 3, 2015

Celebrate America

It sure seems like there is an awful lot going on in the world right now.  Every day, sometimes every hour, there is a new event or monumental decision from our government, leaders and citizens.  I don't know about you, but to me it is a bit overwhelming some days. 

So on this eve of our nations celebration of independence I have decided to hold on to what I have always known about our country- our freedoms, our rights, our unity to celebrate what we believe in. 

I hope that you can find some possibly long-lost memory of 4th of July celebrations that will help you remember how strong our nation has been, and can be, if we all live by what our founding fathers set forth. Enjoy these photos of our pride in America, and I hope you have a blessed 4th of July!




Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Book Review- Laugh Out Loud Pocket Doodles for Girls

This book is totally different than anything I would normally choose for myself.  I normally avoid joke books and only doodle when bored during a speech or on hold on the phone.  I chose to review this book thinking 
that it would be good to tell friends with young 
girls all about when I was done.  
Well I will definitely be telling those friends about this book!
What a fun concept in this pocket sized, easy to carry book.  Each page contains a short riddle and it's answer, and then a partially completed doodle.  The reader then finishes the doodle using her imagination to visualize the answer to the riddle! This book is not only great for those "bored" days, but is a terrific way to encourage artistic ability as well as imaginative thinking.  And one of the things I like best is the Humor Code at the beginning of the book encouraging girls to use 
humor in the right way and to keep it clean.

The author has written this book in a boys version as well.

~I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for my review.

Want to buy a Laugh Out Loud Pocket Doodles book?  Click  HERE !

Monday, June 22, 2015

Squash Burger Casserole

Yes, it's officially summer.  And, yes, the squash and zucchini in the garden are producing like crazy!  If you have planted a garden I bet you have a bunch of them too!  Here is a great recipe for an easy dinner, or a great church casserole, that uses up some of those extra squash and zucchini!

 Squash Burger Casserole

1 lb. ground beef
4 or 5 yellow and zucchini squash, sliced 
3/4 cup seasoned bread crumbs (any flavor- I like parmesan herb)
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. garlic powder

Cook all but the bread crumbs in a skillet until the beef is well browned.
Stir in the bread crumbs until well mixed and set aside.

1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/4 cup shredded sharp or mild cheddar
handful of bread crumbs
2 cups milk

In a saucepan melt the butter.
Stir in the flour and salt. Gradually add the milk until thickened.
Add the cheese and stir until melted.

Pour the cheese sauce over your squash/meat mixture 
and gently mix it all together.
Put the mixture into a casserole (11 x 7 is perfect) that 
has been prepared with oil (spray type works great).
Sprinkle the handful of bread crumbs over the top.

Bake at 350 ° for 35 minutes or until bubbly with golden edges. 

This dish can be put together the day before and baked when needed.
It also makes great leftovers!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Book Review - When Grace Sings

While I normally immerse myself in Amish Fiction novels, this Old Order Mennonite story is engaging and captivating.  Kim Vogel Sawyer has been a favorite author of mine for several years and in When Grace Sings she did not disappoint.  This story of the "city slicker" and the modern day Mennonite Bed and Breakfast owner kept me reading. The combination of the Old Order ways with the modern technology and thinking of our big city reporter create controversy and personal trial throughout the book.  Anyone who lives in todays modern world will appreciate the challenges that can come with mixing the two ways of living. The addition of complex family relationships and the excellent character development is highlighted with portions of each chapter focusing on each character. Mrs. Sawyer draws the reader into this 2nd in the Zimmerman Restoration series by tangling an entertaining yet emotional web.  If you are a reader of Amish or Christian Fiction then you are sure to enjoy this somewhat modern story. 

~I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for my review. 

Want to read this book?  Buy it here !

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Life & Blackberry Syrup

I think one of the greatest things about living in the country is being able to just walk outside to the fields or the woods and gather herbs, berries or flowers for my family.  It's amazing to think that our ancestors were doing the same thing many years ago, and used what grew wild as a source of feeding their family. We have learned what to look for and think we know just how to go about foraging those wild treasures.  But are we really that much in control of even our smallest tasks?

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